Will Your Next Roku Be A Mohu?

What don’t you like about your Roku?  Lack of live programming?  Lack of games?  Primitive interface?

Relief may be on the way.

I just backed the Mohu Channels Kickstarter project.  The Kickstarter project initially targeted $35,000 and is already over $100,000.  The more money they raise, the more features they promise to add to the streamer.  Here are the stretch goals…

  • $70,000: lifetime subscription to the Mohu Guide
  • $85,000: Side-Loading – Personal Movie Playback
  • $100,000: OTA Time-shifting
  • $115,000: 5.1 Audio PassThrough
  • $125,000: Remote Control App for Android tablets and smartphones


The Kickstarter ends Thursday April 10, 2014 @ 1:02 PM EDT.  As of today, 981 backers have pledged $103,569 to the project.  For a pledge of $89, backers get a Mohu Channels streamer, the motion remote, and an HDMI cable. Mohu Channels is a set top streamer that integrates internet streaming and broadcast television via a traditional grid guide.   Unlike the Roku with its proprietary Brightscript apps, Mohu’s streamer creates channels from broadcast stations, google play apps, and even web pages. The remote features a full keyboard and an ‘air mouse’ that moves the pointer on the screen — kind of a WII-mote with a keyboard. I’ll be reviewing the Mohu Channels on https://thebeersoncomcast.wordpress.com when mine arrives in June.  CNet has taken one for a ride and you can read about Channels on the kickstarter page. If this sounds like fun to you, join the Kickstarter project and help us get 5.1 passthrough audio and an android remote app!

Supported apps list…

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By Len Mullen Posted in OTA, OTT

4 comments on “Will Your Next Roku Be A Mohu?

  1. New reader here & happy to find a relevant and timely resource! As a new cord cutter (Jan ’14) I’ve tried, maybe a bit too much, to not spend my cable savings on partial solutions.

    So far I’ve managed pretty well with my Panasonic TV apps including Hulu+ (still on free trial), Amazon Prime, Mohu Leaf & Chromecast. Surprised that I haven’t missed having a DVR or else I’d consider Aereo.

    Biggest issue so far is that basic cable content is being restricted to subscribers. Sadly no device can cure that & if I were to buy eps then it would be cheaper to sign back up for new subscriber cable promo.

    Considered Roku but hard to decipher what non-paid subscription content it would add to mix? Same with Play & especially since DVR is less crucial. Have been on fence about Channels but the extras & lifetime subscription & future unknown updates may get me to take a chance.

    Sorry for the rambling but it’s hard knowing which direction/investment to take when the field is changing so rapidly & the goal was to keep conveniences, while also saving money. Thanks again for your blog!

  2. Jumping is not the best way to cut the cable. I put up my first antenna while we still had cable and made things work before cutting. My miss was that I did not realize how much we use a DVR. Now I get it. We have five DTVPals and five Simple DVRs. That’s another story.

    You need to decide what basic cable programming you are missing and see how you can mitigate the problem or whether you are willing to do without. For some, cable is still the best solution. The NHL, NBA, and MLB are cable only. If these are what you are looking for, you need cable. MLB.com and Centerice will take your money and black out your local teams. If you need to see Game of Thrones or Breaking Bad when it airs, you need cable.

    If you spend a little time on this blog, you will see that I like…

    – Broadcast television (free)
    – EchoStar set top DVRs (DTVPal, DVR+ @ ~$300 per set)
    – Netflix ($8/mo)
    – PlayOn/PlayLater ($80ish one time charge)
    – Rokus (R2XS refurbs @ $50)
    – Simple DVRs ($95 on Woot!)
    – Mohu Channels ($89 Kickstarter)

    My approach is OTA first which is to say that my main objective is to get good broadcast reception. People underestimate the value of broadcast television. If you use http://tvfool.com to locate stations and install a good antenna properly, you may discover you do not need anything else. Last time I installed a SImple DVR, it discovered 43 stations.

    We supplement with Netflix, for the most part. Prime is interesting, but Netflix has more content I want. I do not subscribe to Hulu+ because, for the most part, that programming is available over the air. PlayOn provides access to some cable content and PlayLater is a DVR for content streamed via PlayOn.

    I like the Channels concept. A one time fee of $90 for an interactive guide plus pause/rewind on an OTA connected set seems like a good deal to me. A DVR+ will do this for ~$300 (including disk).

    I do not like Aereo. I like to fall asleep in front of the TV and bouncing out to a menu after each episode makes that difficult. With the way networks blend the end of one program with the beginning of another, you might actually miss something when this happens. If you are watching something live, you might miss something important.

    I have a love/hate relationship with streamers. My first streamer was an Insignia BD player that streamed Netflix and some other stuff. It also played media off a USB disk. I got these as refurbs for $50 each and put one on each set. We still have these. My next streamer was the Sony SMP-N200. This is an amazing piece of hardware which was poorly supported by Sony. It had a lot of streamed channels, played files off an attached USB disk in order continuously, and had outputs for just about everything. I had four of these and all are in use in other homes at this time. We replaced these with Rokus which has apps for cable news web sites, PlayOn, Plex, Simple, and Aereo. Now, I am looking forward to Amazon’s Fire TV and the Mohu Channels streamer.

    All of this plus a trip to Disney has been funded with savings from my cable bill ($6900 over five years assuming my bill would be the same today as it was five years ago).

    Happy streaming!

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