Optimized for streaming 4K HDR content. Boasts Ethernet and USB connections as well as advanced wireless. Smart remote comes with voice control. Includes earbuds for private listening. Now AirPlay capable.
More expensive than other Roku devices.
Good price for 4K video plus the same access to other streaming services and channels. Crisp, clear picture quality with smooth streaming. Smart remote with volume control and voice control. AirPlay capable.
No Ethernet input. No included earbuds.
Especially affordable. Bundled with HDMI cable. Easy to set up. Volume controls via the Roku app. Tiny shelf-top footprint. Simple, uncomplicated remote control. Newly AirPlay capable.
Basic remote lacks voice control or audio output.
Plugs into HDMI port. Offers an excellent picture quality with 4K streaming. Features Roku smart remote with voice control. Optimized for weak and distant WiFi signals. Can even fit a wall-mounted TV. AirPlay capable.
You need to run its power cord around your TV.
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.
Roku are compact streaming devices that connect to your TV and offer a range of streaming services like Netflix or Hulu. Though there are similar streaming devices available, Roku was the originator and makes streaming devices that are easy to use and set up. However, you should carefully consider which model is best for you and best complements your TV and entertainment setup.
Roku sticks are the most affordable option and are easy to transport due to their small size and lack of wires. Roku boxes are pricier but offer more versatility and are likely to be better suited to working in tandem with an entertainment system. The maximum resolution of Roku devices vary and should match the resolution of your TV. Setting up your Roku is usually as easy as plugging in the device, connecting to the internet, and logging into your accounts on various streaming services.
A Roku can make a great addition to any living room, but you should understand what each model has to offer before you make a purchase. If you are ready to choose a Roku, consider our top recommendations. To learn more about the types of Rokus available, continue reading.
Roku offers a wide variety of streaming devices, but they all fit into one of two physical form factors: Roku sticks and Roku boxes.
Roku sticks are small devices that plug directly into any HDMI port on your TV and are powered by your TV’s USB ports. The stick form factor is unique because it’s so portable; at about the size of a pack of gum, it can go just about anywhere with you. While not as fast as their box counterparts, Roku sticks are perfect for anyone who needs streaming video on the go or who doesn’t need top-of-the-line hardware.
Roku’s premium 4K models support High Dynamic Range (HDR), a new technology that displays video content with a wider range of colors and increased color contrast. If you own a 4K TV that’s HDR-compatible, get a Roku that delivers HDR – the visual improvement is stunning.
Roku boxes look like small, unassuming hockey pucks. They include a host of nice-to-have features that streaming sticks don’t offer (such as USB ports for connecting external storage or an Ethernet port). Roku boxes are perfect companions to your existing entertainment set up, and their improved internals deliver a lightning-fast user experience.
A Roku speaker integrates the video and audio convenience of the core Roku platform into a speaker bar. While these models are pricier than other Roku models, Roku speakers are optimized for 4K content, surround sound systems, and are the best option for rooms with a large TV.
As you’re considering which Roku model to buy, keep the resolution of your TV in mind. Is your TV is a standard model, a 1080p HDTV, or one of the newer 4K models?
If you have a 1080p HDTV, there isn’t a lot of sense in buying one of their 4K models, especially considering the cost savings. If one of the 4K models has a “killer feature” that you need, it will still work on your 1080p TV, but without the benefit of 4K resolution.
Although all Rokus typically cost less than $100, it’s important to know what you might be missing if you choose a lower-cost model.
Roku sticks cost between $30 and $70. Pricier Roku sticks include additional features like voice search and the ability to use the Roku remote to turn your TV on and off.
Q. Will a Roku stick work if I’m traveling abroad?
A. Roku sticks can connect to WiFi networks wherever they are available. However, it’s important to note that if your Roku is powered by plugging into the wall (and not via USB), you may need a power converter to be able to plug it in outside of the U.S. In addition, many American streaming content providers limit your access to their content when connecting from another country, so you may have fewer things to watch, depending on where you are.
Q. Can I play video games on a Roku?
A. Many Roku models are compatible with games from the Roku online store and can be played by using the remote control as a game controller. Video games on Rokus are very similar to those found on Android and iOS devices.
Q. Can I use a wired network with Roku?
A. Roku boxes commonly have Ethernet ports for connecting via a wired network connection (in addition to their built-in WiFi), while Roku sticks can only connect via WiFi.