Roku closed a big gap in its channel line-up Tuesday by finally adding a YouTube channel. The channel will initially just be available on the Roku 3, but a YouTube (S GOOG) spokesperson told me that the company hopes to bring it to other Roku devices in 2014.
Roku’s new YouTube channel uses the video service’s familiar HTML UI that you’ll find on many other devices as well, and the app also comes with YouTube’s “send to TV” feature, which means that Roku has now followed up on an earlier announcement and implemented DIAL, a multiscreen protocol that has been jointly developed by Netflix (S NFLX) and YouTube.
This is the first time Roku has had an official YouTube channel. The device launched just with Netflix support in 2008, and an independent developer added an unofficial YouTube channel at some point, but Google forced Roku to shut down that channel in 2011. However, earlier this summer, a survey suggested that Roku was getting ready to finally add YouTube.