Many smart TVs already have built-in applications in their interface, such as Netflix, Youtube, Okko and others. In this regard, users often wonder why they should install Roku or any other similar product.
Roku is a device that streams media from the Internet to a TV. It does not require complex installation and connection, while giving users the ability to manage streaming content.
Even if you have a smart TV, that’s no reason not to install Roku. The service provides access to more than 4500 official and unofficial channels (depending on the location of the device).
What is Roku?
Roku is a service that opens up great opportunities for fans to watch various shows, movies and series. Until recently, TV owners were limited in their choice. To get more channels, they connected cable broadcasting. Otherwise, they were content with 5-20 channels, most of which required certain settings.
Over time, streaming services began to appear through which it was possible to watch entertaining and educational videos. However, you need to pay for viewing, which means spending additional funds to increase the number of video sites.
Since the early 2000s, streaming services have continued to evolve and people’s tastes have become more sophisticated. Now watching TV shows is not limited exclusively to Netflix, interesting pictures are released by Amazon and HBO. It was during this period that smart TVs began to appear on the market. They were equipped not only with “smart” functions, but also with applications for watching videos.
Manufacturers have realized that people want quick access to their favorite movies and TV shows. They began to negotiate with TV manufacturers and equip the system with a user-friendly interface, sharpened for actively watching video from different services.
Roku is on the market today. With it, users can access several thousand channels. In addition to channels, you have the opportunity to listen to music or view photos from a PC connected to your home network.
The list of the best free Roku channels includes:
- Roku Channel is the official channel that allows you to watch movies for free;
- Pluto TV – live broadcasts from NBC News, MSNBC, Sky News, and Bloomberg are open to users;
- FilmRise – a channel that broadcasts classic films;
- Hasbro Studios – a children’s channel offering cartoons for toddlers and teenagers;
- Fox News – news channel;
- Pandora is a popular audio app, but the free version has limited functionality.
- Spotify – this service needs no introduction;
- TuneIn Radio – more than 100 thousand radio stations are available to users, which broadcast everything from sports to politics.
If a user wants to watch Netflix using Roku, they still need to buy a subscription. The same goes for other streaming services.
How did Roku come about?
Roku was founded in October 2002. This word means “six” in Japanese. The creator is considered to be Anthony Wood, and it was his 6th project up to that time. Wood has been vice president of Netflix since 2007. In those years, the founder of the streaming service wanted to release a prefix, and Wood began to help him with this.
Roku appeared in 2008. Unfortunately, time has shown that people are unwilling to install a set-top box that will exclusively stream Netflix content. Then Wood begins to work on the creation of a universal device that would show films and series from different platforms.
Today, Roku is a popular and affordable device with an optimized OS and a simple interface.
By installing Roku, the user gets access to a huge library of video content. However, the Roku Channel of the same name remains the most popular. It gives you access to over 100,000 free shows and series. To do this, the client needs to create an account and start browsing. You don’t need to buy a subscription or pay for content.
How to watch Roku?
You can watch video content through the Roku platform, the mobile application of the same name and the browser. There are 4 types of streaming devices in total. It is with their help that it is most convenient to watch movies and series.
It doesn’t matter which device you purchased. They have similar functionality and require a stable internet connection. Included with the device is an adapter, an HDMI cable and a remote control.
You can open a Roku channel through a browser on a computer, tablet, or laptop. It is important to register in the system in advance and create an account.
For owners of smartphones based on Android and IOS OS, the Roku application has been developed. It acts as a remote control and also allows you to access the channel without installing a streaming device. It also makes it easy to manage subscriptions. Now each user will be able to watch video from the screen of a mobile phone, or turn on the duplication mode.
The duplication mode is activated according to the instructions:
- connect your smartphone and Roku TV to the same Internet network;
- open “Settings” on your phone;
- find the “screen mirror” or “wireless display” function;
- find the Screen Mirror option;
- The device will start searching and will soon find the Roku TV.
- connect to it.
This algorithm works for smartphones based on the Android OS. iPhone owners will need to go to the “Control Center” section and find Screen Mirroring in it. After that, the device will find the Roku TV, and you will connect to it by first dialing the verification code.
After purchasing a Roku device, you need to set it up and run it. Fortunately, the interface will not cause difficulties even for those who use such a service for the first time. For convenience, the manufacturer has equipped Roku with many useful features.
One such option is voice search. If the OSD menu allows you to switch between icons using the buttons on the remote control, then when using the mobile application, it is possible to control the system by voice. This way you can find a movie by a certain director or a series with a specific actor.
Another equally interesting Roku option is the Smart Guide. The function includes not only a list of available channels, but also applications for easier navigation. The user can turn on the video from a certain point, view the programs of the last 2 weeks and add content to favorites.
To improve the quality of playback on your TV, we recommend connecting to an audio system or soundbar. If desired, you can use a wireless speaker system from Roku. It was released specifically for owners of Roku TVs.
Should you buy Roku?
Many video content lovers have already tried to connect to Roku and expressed their attitude towards the service. The creators believe that a streaming device can be useful for every category of users. A wide choice of channels, integration with mobile devices, low price for the purchase of the device – this is only a small part of the advantages of Roku.