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The best Roku streaming players: What are your options right now?

Turn any dumb TV into a smart one!
By
December 20, 2021
Roku Premiere device 3
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

The best Roku streaming players are affordable, yet provide access to a slew of media streaming services. Whether it’s YouTube, Sling TV, Hulu, or Netflix, Roku has your streaming needs covered. Let’s take a look at our favorite options!

More: Roku buyer’s guide

The best Roku streaming players:

Editor’s note: We will update our list of the best Roku streaming players as new devices launch.


Roku Ultra

Roku Ultra accessories
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

The Roku Ultra supports Full HD, 4K UHD, and HDR streaming. While it’s not the only Roku streaming player to support such resolutions, this is the top-of-the-line and best Roku streaming player you can buy.

Also: The best video streaming services

The Ultra is the only Roku streaming player with an Ethernet port. It’s also the only option with storage expansion through a microSD card slot or full-size USB port. Even the remote is unique since it features personal shortcut buttons, a remote finder, buttons for TV power, volume, mute, and a headphone jack for private listening. On that note, you’ll also be happy to learn it comes with some nice JBL headphones.

Roku also offers a Walmart exclusive Ultra LT, which offers many of the same features at a lower price. It drops a few programmable buttons from the remote, and you won’t find a USB port, but the savings are worth the difference.


Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus

The Roku Streaming Stick Plus was great, but a newer and improved version has hit the market. The newer iteration is the Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus.

The device comes with more powerful performance and a faster startup, and the rechargeable remote has a lost remote finder feature. Wi-Fi is expected to reach longer ranges and is twice as fast as the previous iteration. You’ll also enjoy 4K, HDR, and Dolby Vision.

Looks don’t matter much, considering the device will be hiding behind a TV, but it happens to look better too, if you happen to care about that.


Roku Express 4K Plus

roku express 4k plus

The Roku Express 4K Plus is among the latest streaming boxes from Roku. It costs less than $40, but it still supports 4K HDR streaming. You also get dual-band Wi-Fi, and there’s a micro-USB Ethernet port for a wired Internet connection.

Related: The best Android TV devices you can buy

The streaming box also comes with a voice remote supporting voice commands via Alexa or Google Assistant-enabled devices. It even supports Apple’s HomeKit for controlling the box via Siri and Airplay for casting iPhone and iPad content to the Roku. It comes with its HDMI cable, and there’s an adhesive strip so you can mount it to the back of your TV. Overall, this is a feature-packed video-streaming box for a very reasonable price tag.


Roku Express

Roku Express on bookshelf
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

The Roku Express is an excellent option for those who want a simple streaming device at the lowest cost possible. It’s super easy to use and set up. Features include HD resolution support, a simple remote, and private listening on mobile. You can also use it with Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant.


TCL Smart TV

TCL Smart TV

If you are sure you want to stick with Roku as your streaming platform, you might consider going all in and getting a Roku Smart TV. These come with Roku integrated and need no extra accessories, therefore clearing up your entertainment area. Having fewer things to worry about is always a good thing!

Related: Awesome TV deals you should take a look at

There are some pretty affordable Roku Smart TVs, too. TCL’s Roku Smart TV units start at around $300 for the 43-inch version. It’s a basic TV, yet still features 4K definition, HDR, and Roku functionality. You can also upgrade to an 85-inch version.


Streambar Pro

Streambar Pro 1

If you want the absolute best audio experience, look no further than the Roku Streambar Pro. This is easily among the best Roku streaming players, especially if you want to upgrade your TV speakers. It’s an area many TVs need help with, and if you are already paying for a streaming device, you might as well get both upgrades in one.

This device not only turns your TV into a 4K Roku streaming device, but it comes with a cinematic audio experience you will love. It offers an expanded frequency range, dynamic bass, and Dolby Audio support. There are four 2.5-inch speakers inside. Bluetooth support also ensures that you get a multi-purpose speaker for all your needs.

This is the most expensive of all Roku streaming players, but it is very much worth it if you also want to invest in quality audio equipment.


Are you not convinced about Roku streaming devices? We also have a list of the best streaming boxes overall. It includes options from all major platforms, brands, and price ranges.

Check it out: The best media streaming devices