The best Roku of 2020

From bestreviews.com
By
Jennifer Blair
BestReviews

In addition to channels and streaming services, you can also purchase video games through Roku’s Channel Store.

These days, nearly all the best TV shows, movies, and documentaries are available from streaming services. If you want to watch titles from Netflix, Hulu, or Disney+ on your TV, you need a streaming device like the Roku to connect.

Roku devices are just one of many options you can use for streaming, but they're some of the most affordable. They're extremely straightforward to set up and move around your home or take on the go. The brand offers several models, depending on the type of resolution you prefer and the jacks or ports you need.

To help you choose the best Roku for your entertainment center, we've taken a fresh look at the brand's offerings and product trends and include two new feature-packed Roku devices for your consideration, as well as a returning favorite.

Best Rokus of 2020

1. Roku Premiere+: A 4K streaming device that offers an outstanding picture and top-notch streaming speed. This model is a longtime favorite of ours.

2. Roku Streaming Stick+: An incredibly budget-friendly device that offers smooth streaming and excellent portability. This is a newcomer to our short list, but it earns a spot for its excellent value.

3. Roku Premiere: An easy-to-set-up streaming device for quick loading and high-definition resolution that's terrific for 4K TVs. This is another new favorite on our list.

For full reviews of these products, scroll to the bottom.

What you need to know before buying a Roku

Roku offers streaming devices in two different forms: sticks and boxes. Both types allow you to stream your favorite movies and TV shows, but you may prefer one over the other based on your TV setup and viewing habits.

Roku sticks are slim, compact devices that fit into an HDMI port on your TV and receive power through the TV's USB ports. The main benefit of a Roku stick is that it's highly portable, so you can take it anywhere you go. You don't get the same streaming speed as you would from a box, so they may not be the best option if you want the highest-tech model.

Roku boxes are fairly small, but they're not as portable as a stick. They offer features the sticks don't, including an ethernet port and USB port, which allow you to connect external storage devices. They also provide the fastest streaming speeds and generally feature the best hardware of all Roku models.

You can find TVs with the Roku operating system and app built-in, so you don't need a separate stick or box to connect to streaming services. They can be an excellent value if you're in the market for both a new TV and a streaming device.

When you're choosing a Roku device, consider your TV's resolution. For a standard 1080p HD TV, you don't necessarily need a Roku device with premium 4K resolution; you won't see the higher resolution on your TV, though the 4K Roku is compatible with standard TVs if it has features you don't want to miss out on. If you have a 4K TV, you want a 4K Roku device to ensure you get the highest quality resolution for streaming.

Fortunately, there's a Roku device to fit most budgets. The majority of devices cost $100 and under. Roku sticks are typically the most affordable, ranging from $30 to $70. You can spend between $70 and $100 for a Roku box.

FAQ

Q. What channels and streaming services are available on Roku?

A. All major streaming services, including Netflix, Hulu, VUDU, Apple TV, Showtime, and Disney+, are available on Roku. You can find additional channels in the Roku Channel Store through the Roku app.

Q. Does Roku charge a monthly subscription fee?

A. Roku doesn't charge any fee itself, but you have to pay for streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and Disney+, as well as some premium channels like Showtime.

In-depth reviews for best Rokus

Best of the best: Roku Premiere+

What we like: Features a quad-core processor for fast, smooth streaming. Offers a micro SD port for extra storage. Easily transitions from TV audio to headphones for private viewing.

What we dislike: Stream can freeze if device overheats.

Best bang for your buck: Roku Streaming Stick+

What we like: Setup is quick and easy. Features a private listening feature through the app. Comes with a voice remote.

What we dislike: Can use a lot of internet data because it doesn't turn off automatically.

Choice 3: Roku Premiere

What we like: A good value for a 4K device. Offers a crystal-clear picture and seamless streaming. Features an enhanced "point anywhere" remote.

What we dislike: There can be a problem with audio syncing.

Jennifer Blair is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.

BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. BestReviews and its newspaper partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links.

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