I figured I would update this thread because since I posted it, I have actually purchased and used both..
After this thread was posted I purchased an Apple TV and used it for almost 3 months.. I then sold it and purchased a used Roku XDS off Craigslist..
The Roku died a horrible death and I then purchased another Apple TV (3rd Gen) from Sams Club. I used the Apple TV for about 2 more months then decided to return it Sams (they have a 90-day return policy) because I was not happy with the channel content they provided..
I then purchased another Roku XDS (this one brand new)
I have now used both twice within the last year and here are my thoughts. I figured I would post here in case anyone else has a similar question and finds this thread..
The Apple TV appears to be built better, it slightly bigger and heavier (a plus in my book).. The Apple TV syncs up with my computer just fine and AirPlay is an added bonus.. I do not like the fact that I am stuck with the content that Apple decides I want on the device. There is no way to add / remove channels.. The GUI is gorgeous and easy flowing.. No Pandora or ability to add it. No TWiT app (love their shows) or ability to add it. I know I can subscribe to the podcasts but I often enjoy watching the live feed..
The Roku is light and feels cheap.. The GUI is seriously leaps and bounds behind the Apple TV.. But I can add and remove hundreds and hundreds of channels. If something is not listed in the Channel Store, there are a TON of private channels where you simply enter a code to get the channel on your box..
I am keeping the Roku XDS..
For me, I really like the fact that I can add and remove the content that I want.. This is a big, huge, and massive bonus in my book.. Pandora? Check! TWiT? Check!
I will miss AirPlay but I honestly did not use it much at all and while home sharing from my computer was nice, it was not a feature I used often..
For me at least the Roku wins for MY needs.. If Apple had the ability to add and remove channels then it would blow the Roku away.. As it stands now, you are stuck with the content that Apple thinks you want with no way of changing it.. For me, channel options rule..