Roku 3 Streaming Media Player

Editor rating

4.4/5 on Aug 15, 2015

User's rating

556 reviews

PROS

  • Massive content
  • Roku Feed
  • Lightning fast
  • Remote control features

CONS

  • No iTunes
  • Fewer games than Amazon TV
  • No Kodi install

VERDICT

For the Roku 3 media streaming player, there are plenty of perks, with the main one being lots of content available to you for entertainment purposes. The sheer volume of movies, TV shows and more goes beyond any other streamer on the market right now. But if you want to install Kodi, you won't be impressed by what we found out about it. See the details below.

Take a look at our massive media streamer round-up post and find out how we rank this product!

Features:

  • Dual Core BCM11130 processor
  • 900MHz speed
  •  Connections:
    • 10/100 Base-T Ethernet
    • USB port
    • Audio Output: Digital Over HDMI
    • Video Outputs: 720p/1080p
    • microSD slot
  • Dual-band Wi-Fi
  • Remote and earbuds included
  • Weight: 0.31 pounds
  • Dimensions: 3.5" x 3.5" x 1"

The black top-set box has plenty of connections built into it; the back of the player has HDMI, Ethernet, a microSD card slot, and power ports too.

The best points about Roku 3 (second generation) are:

Massive Content

In terms of the amount of content on the media streaming player, the Roku 3 blows away the competition. The Roku Channel Store gives you access to the major players on the market, including Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Instant Video, Vudu, Hulu Plus, HBO Go, NBA, MLB.TV, and much more. There is 700 channel available; it is a mix of free and paid options.

Types of content vary from TV shows and movies to movies, sports, and kids programs. It has more apps than any competitor and doesn't shove a particular content partner down the user's throat either.

Roku Feed

This exclusive feature is a cool one. With Roku Feed, part of the Roku software built into your box, you "follow" content. For example, perhaps there's a movie you want to see that's not available yet. You can follow it on your Roku and updates on it will then appear in your feed. You can also view the "Movies Coming Soon" area to keep track of what's about to release onto your Roku 3.

Lightning Fast

Get awesome performance. Roku 3 is lightning fast as you move between screens and for videos to start. Plus, you can customize its screens, and it's easy to use. Reliability and speed are positive points.

Remote Control Features

The remote has a microphone built into it, so you can use it for voice search. Simply speak into the remote to prompt the box to search for the movie or TV show that you want to see. Voice search is pretty accurate and saves time when you want to find a specific title.

Also, the remote has a headphone jack, which is useful when you want to enjoy a song or show with headphones on so you won't disrupt the rest of the house. Roku 3 even comes with a pair of purple earbuds.

As well, simply download the free Roku app for Android or iOS to transform your smartphone or tablet into the remote for your Roku 3. You can control the box via your mobile device of choice!

The remote is useful too when you play games as it is motion controlled. There are also A/B buttons on it to use during gameplay.

The pitfalls of the Roku 3 are:

No iTunes

Are you an iTunes addict? If so, be aware that you won't be able to stream your iTunes library to your Roku. There is a workaround, but it can be time-consuming and clunky. You would have to set up image mirroring to mirror the iTunes videos to your TV via Roku. If this option bothers you, then Apple TV 3 might be more up your alley.

Fewer Games than Amazon TV

While you can play games on the Roku 3, there's not nearly as big of a selection as on Amazon Fire TV. Currently you can play about 30 games on your Roku media streaming player. Angry Birds is the most popular one.

No Kodi Install

If you want Kodi on your Roku 3, you'll be out of luck here. It's impossible to hack the box to install Kodi. But instead you can always install Kodi onto your Android device and then mirror the screen to your TV via your set-top box. But that can be time-consuming and awkward. Some users instead choose to use Plex Media Server.