The new age of televisions make televisions as smart as some basic computers. With built in Applications to stream your favorite shows from Netflix, Hulu, Vudu & many more, some of the new Smart TVs are an all-in-one solution for home entertainment.
However, there are those of us that do not want to spend $1250 on a new Smart TV or still have a perfectly acceptable television that is simply lacking the “smart” features. Luckily, there is now an affordable solution to make any TV (provided it has an HDMI port, at the minimum). The Roku Streaming Stick will help those who want the capabilities of the ‘smart TVs’ without the price tag. You can get this Roku Streaming Stick at Best Buy and other major retailers. The Roku Streaming Stick comes in a box with a few things:
- 2 AAA batteries
- Power adapter
- Product manual
- RF remote control
- Roku Streaming Stick (2016 Model)
- USB cable
Roku Streaming Stick Setup
Setting up the Roku Streaming Stick on your current TV is very easy to do. After you plug in your Roku into the HDMI input of your television, switch to that input and follow the simple instructions for connecting it to your WiFi.
Some users may get frustrated trying to connect to their WiFi only using the Roku remote, as it does take some patience. Additionally, you need to set up a Roku account in order to get access to some of their content. For more information on how this device up, check out Roku’s setup tutorial video for the Roku Streaming Stick.
Roku Streaming Stick Apps
Before we get started talking about all of the Applications that the Roku Streaming Stick comes with pre-installed, it is very important to note that just because the Roku has an integration with services like HBO GO, it does not mean you get those services for free; you still have to pay for most of (if not all) the services that Roku gives you access to. The Roku Streaming Stick simply gives you the ability to stream content without having to be hard lined or having a smart TV. Some of the apps currently associated with the Roku Channel Store are:
- HBO GO
- Sling Television
- Amazon Video
- Full channel app list
The Roku Streaming Stick also has a smartphone app that turns your smartphone into a Roku remote, which is nice in the event the remote gets lost you want to travel with your stick!
I was pleasantly surprised with the streaming quality of the Roku Streaming Stick. The whole reason I began researching products like this is because my laptop computer was having a hard time buffering when I was attempting to stream Netflix or Vudu movies in my room. I have one smart TV in my downstairs living room (where the router is located), but did not feel it was worth the money to buy another one for the sparse viewing that is done before bed sometimes.
It was awesome to see that the Roku Streaming Stick performed better than my Yoga laptop when it came to streaming content from various apps (be sure to check out the Lenovo Yoga 910 Laptop Review. I just upgraded, and its awesome!).
Roku Streaming Stick Price
When you compare the Roku Streaming Stick price to the alternative of buying a new smart TV for similar functionality, the Roku is a solid alternative for price-conscious shoppers. For $39.99 you can get functionality comparable to that of the newest smart TVs for a small fraction of the price.