This summer, Bloomberg reported that Roku was working on a WiFi extender that would help strengthen weak WiFi to improve streaming quality. We now know that Roku is testing that WiFi extender, called the Roku Relay.
Here’s how Roku describes the Relay.
Roku Relay is a dual-band network device that creates a stronger wireless connection to your Roku® streaming devices, and extends the reach of your network to Roku devices installed in rooms farther away from your router*. This link helps resolve streaming issues caused by weak wireless signals, such as buffering, picture degradation, and audio dropouts. Roku Relay may also help if your Roku device is too far from your router to deliver high-quality picture formats like 4K Ultra HD and HDR.
Now a report from Tech Hive says the new product passed through the FCC in August and began testing with customers in September. The report also includes some of the details that came from support documents from Roku, as well as published apps for iOS and Android.
According to those resources, the Roku relay only works with Roku streaming devices and Roku TVs. The support page for Roku Relay says “it can free up bandwidth on your existing network by adding a wireless channel dedicated to Roku streaming. Like an “express lane” for audio and video, your network can be made less congested for your other wireless network devices.”
To setup the device, you’ll just need a wall power outlet, the Roku Relay mobile app (separate from the regular Roku app), and enabled Bluetooth on your mobile device.
Roku says the Relay will work with all Roku TVs and all models of the Roku Express, Roku Express+, Roku Streaming Stick+, Roku 2, Roku 3, Roku 4, Roku Premiere, Roku Premiere+, and Roku Ultra.
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