Something weird happened this morning. Something involving PVR-maker Roku and its plans for an "international expansion". One image in particular led us to believe the next streaming service to pop up in Australia, to be called "StreamCo", would be powered by the shiny Roku 3 box. But is it all just a big coincidence?
Australia's content providers are all racing to beat Netflix to the Australian market, while also trying to sway build offerings to convince local customers away from the foreign streaming service. Fairfax and Nine Entertainment are both looking to make a new service called StreamCo for just that reason. It's worth noting up front that Fairfax, the company with a stake in StreamCo, also owns Allure Media which publishes Gizmodo Australia. Regardless of the ownership, we still think StreamCo is a stupid name.
As we all sipped our first morning coffee in the office this morning, Roku was announcing a new program called "Roku Powered" on the other side of the world, designed to expand its presence outside the US by creating boxes that could be used in lieu of set-top boxes.
The Roku Powered announcement would see international providers offer new Roku set top boxes based on the design of the slick-looking Roku 3, complete with the branding of the provider on the front and the top of the device.
To illustrate this, Roku put out an image of one of its Roku 3 units with dummy branding which read...you guessed it..."StreamCo".
We put the question to Roku as to whether it will finally bring its devices out here in partnership with StreamCo, but it responded that the dummy branding was just that, and a massive coincidence at the same time:
"Yes, those images are from us and show an example of how a device would be branded if the company were called 'StreamCo'. That’s just a coincidence," Roku told us in a statement.
We've reached out to Fairfax and Nine Entertainment to double- and triple-check that they're not using Roku boxes in their new streaming service of the same name, but we haven't yet heard back.
Still, does it just serve to confirm that StreamCo is a stupid name for a streaming service? Get on that one, guys.