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Roku is an app that allows you to use your smartphone to control compatible streaming players and TVs. You can use it to browse huge selection of TV shows and movies, searching for them with just your voice, launch your favorite channels from your phone, and so on.

Interface 4/5

The interface is rather typical for streaming apps, so you won’t be confused even if you’ve used different kind of streaming service earlier. You can try one of the popular movies the app offers you, or choose your favorite content channels like Netflix or YouTube and search for some shows or flicks manually. The previews are big enough even on smaller phone screens, so you don’t have to squint.

Of course, there is also a remote mode in which the app works as a real TV remote. It’s not very intuitive and requires some time to get used to, but all in all has all the functions you’d expect from it, like pausing the film playing right now, or choosing from menu options. All in all, the interface is quite friendly and offers options to customize it according to your needs.

Features 4/5

While video content streaming is the main feature of Roku, it has a lot of other interesting options that allow it to compete with other streaming apps successfully. Current-generation Roku devices allow users to control them with voice commands, so you won’t need to use a mobile keyboard to search for content. There are minor problems with voice recognition from time to time, but you can always just type your request manually.

Roku requires compatible devices to work properly, but you don’t have to buy them if you don’t want features they offer. Even without them, you can access the Roku Channel which is a free ad-supported TV shows, news, and movies channel with more than ten thousand titles. All you have to do is install the app and start watching, and that is a very nice offer indeed.

Usability 4/5

The app is pretty usable even without compatible devices since you get access to a huge library of shows and movies for free, and that free channel really has a better selection of content and fewer ads than most of the similar broadcasters. Roku has even bigger plans for this platform, expecting to add more than twenty collections for users who’d like to buy subscriptions.

Compatibility 4/5

The app was created for Android devices mainly, but it has other versions that are designed specifically for iOS devices, including iPhones and iPads. And don’t forget that you need additional Roku devices to use all of the app’s features.

Summary

Roku is a nice streaming app with a lot of features. Some of them are not available without additional hardware, but the app is great even without them, offering you access to a subscription-free channel with a huge collection of licensed content. So give it a try, even if you’re not planning to buy any Roku devices.

Pros:

  • Friendly interface
  • Supports voice commands
  • Many useful features.

Cons:

  • Minor problems with voice recognition
  • Requires additional devices to work properly.
4
Interface
4
Features
4
Usability
4
Compatibility
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3 Comments

  • I have roku, I'm not tech savvy. HOW can I get free local channels on my roku. I see air tv,but I can't find the app on line for the Forrest of clutter on these various websites. It's maddening. I'm a simple person my wife and I have a 59 inch sharp tv with roku built in. So with all that said, can SOMEBODY help me with this problem. We are retired folk raised in the 50s and 60s. Simple instructions is what we crave. Thank you, John "frustrated"Carmona.
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  • Hi there. I was using this app on my old Sharp TV and now I bought a new one. Could you describe me how to download roku app on samsung smart tv? I have NU8000 model. Thanks.
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    • Go to google store or Microsoft store and search Roku remote and download it
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  • Roku should be able to easier to setup up.
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