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Dear Roku, Best Buy is not Doing any Justice for your Brand.

Posted by J Powers at 2:41 PM on November 8, 2010

I decided to update my IPTV at home. A newer TV and Over The Top (OTT) system. I have run Boxee for a while, but wanted to get the Roku Box. I heard that Best Buy had the Roku box, so I made the trek out to the store.

That was a bad idea.

I was on the east side of town, so I stopped into the East side location. I figured the Roku would be somewhere next to the Google TV display. It wasn’t – In fact, I could not find it anywhere.

I did something I try not to do – envoke a Best Buy employee. I never have any luck with these guys, so I avoid them. However, since I couldn’t find what I was looking for, I had to walk up to one. And the following conversation is why:

Hello. I am looking for the Roku box

Yes. They are over here (we walk to where the supposed Roku is). Here you go. It comes with Blu-Ray.

Excuse me? Roku does not have a Blu-Ray Model.

This one is. You can get Netflix.

I am sorry, but that is not a Roku box. Just because it connects to Netflix doesn’t make it a Roku.

Oh… Well, we are out of Roku players (pointing to the other shelf)

When will you get more?

We only got one. I don’t know when the next one is. However, we have a great line of internet connected players (pointing down the row).

This conversation really pissed me off. The guy  was quick to say that a Roku Box was some Blu-Ray from Insignia for $99. At first I didn’t think of it, but a couple days later I was in Best Buy on the West side and the exact same thing happened.

The Best Buy employee tried to tell me that this Blu-Ray player with Netflix was exactly like a Roku. Once again, I was annoyed and told him off. I walked out of the store, putting down what I was planning on purchasing.

Both stores only received 1-2 models of Roku. Both stores sold out in an hour and couldn’t tell me when the next batch was going to be here. Both employees also said that another device was “Just like the Roku”.

Certain Blu-Ray players do have applications. You can get Netflix and Vudu – along with other cool options to the player. However, this is not a Roku.

I started thinking about this: With the news announcement that you can get a Netgear branded Roku at Best Buy, I wonder how many people ventured out to get this. I also wonder how many ended up getting something else?

I have never been felt so misled by an employee in a long time. The last time I was, it was a Radio Shack employee trying to sell me a CD player stating it had MP3 support. Over 10 years later, I walked out of a store feeling just as annoyed.

The worst part about the Roku at Best Buy is it’s overshadowed by Google TV. The humongous display might make people change ideas for IPTV.

I ended up purchasing the box online, although I thought it would be nice to have a Blu-Ray Roku Box. Nonetheless, I think I will be avoiding Best Buy for a while.

5 Comments

  1. From Alan at 6:12 pm on November 8, 2010

    BestBuy name tags bear a message, and the message is:
    “BEWARE! This is not a person for talking — this is a person for looking away and avoiding.”

  2. From teemark at 8:55 pm on November 8, 2010

    Best Buy seems to have become the New Radio Shack, just bigger and with blue shirts. They know nothing about the products they sell, and they’ll say anything to make a sale to unsuspecting buyers.

  3. From GNC-2010-11-08 #625 Back in the Saddle - Geek News Central at 10:29 pm on November 8, 2010

    [...] Creative Commons big win in Belgium. Patent Office gets more Screwed. Ready for Mini Big Bangs. Hey Best Buy Get Squared away on Roku. Can you Fly? 48 Million iPads? Bloglines Saved. Limewire back from the Dead. Boxee needs Cash. [...]

  4. From Louis Sypher at 2:51 am on November 9, 2010

    I had a BB employee tell me the same thing in Iowa. Wonder if it’s policy.

  5. From Dan at 9:02 am on November 9, 2010

    Years ago, I used to buy a lot of stuff at Best Buy. Incompetent employees, bad policies, and the real kicker, them trying to foist _magazine subscriptions_ on me at the checkout lane has changed all of that. Now Best Buy is nothing but the showroom where I sometimes go to try out stuff before I buy it on Amazon.