What is the Roku Streaming Stick+?
The Roku Streaming Stick Plus is a device that plugs into your TV to deliver seamless HD streaming and brilliant picture quality. The flash drive-sized wireless receiver may be small, but it packs a serious punch. It lets you watch your favorite movies and shows in 4K, HD, and HDR10 to give you the best streaming experience possible.
With the perfect balance of affordability, design, and performance, the Roku Streaming Stick+ remains undefeated as the ultimate streamer.
The good and the bad
How much does the Roku Streaming Stick+ cost?
At $49.99 MSRP, the Roku Streaming Stick+ is one of the most affordable streamers on the market — competitors like Apple TV 4K will set you back around $179. Combined with the fact that it delivers exceptional performance, it’s no surprise that the device has won the hearts of tech reviewers and entertainment fans alike.
The cost of the Roku Streaming Stick+ varies from store to store, especially with limited period offers. You can sometimes find it on sale at Amazon.com for around $39.99. Other stores like Best Buy, Kohl’s, Staples, and the official Roku website currently have it for $39.99.
How does the Roku Streaming Stick+ compare in price to the competition? We previously mentioned the Apple TV 4K cost at around $179 if you buy directly from Apple. But that is one of the most expensive competitors. Chromecast with Google TV costs $49.99 or $89.99 if you want six months of Netflix included. The top price competition for Roku Streaming Stick+ is Amazon’s Fire Stick 4K which can be purchased for $37.99.
Compare Roku and Chromecast here.
Roku Streaming Stick+ at a glance
|Roku Streaming Stick+|
|Original content||Coming soon|
|Streaming quality||Up to 4K UHD and HDR10|
The Roku Streaming Stick+ is a stick-style streaming device with built-in Wi-Fi that plugs into your TV. Once you’ve connected it to the internet, you’ll stream with ease. Using the voice assistant and voice remote features, you can adjust your TV volume, change channels, and mute without lifting a finger. In early 2021 Roku took a dive into the world of original content when they announced the expansion of The Roku Channel by adding Quibi. Hundreds of hours of original content will be available sometime in 2021.
Roku has an extensive library of streaming apps available and delivers the 4K experience at a reasonable price.
Roku Streaming Stick+ services and apps
If you’re in the market for a streaming device, it’s essential to know that not every streaming device supports every streaming service and app. Roku Streaming Stick+ does not require or push for any specific streaming service. Roku lets you stream both paid and free programming from a wide variety of services. Here is a breakdown of some popular apps and whether or not they’re available on Roku Streaming Stick+ and other streaming devices.
|Hulu||HBO Max||Peacock||Disney+||Apple TV+||Sling TV|
You can also use your Roku Streaming Stick Plus to access high-quality streams of your favorite movies and shows through paid services. Some of the leading paid streaming services on Roku include:
The new streaming service from Disney gives you access to both well-loved Disney classics and the latest releases. Besides Disney productions, Disney+ also offers content from popular franchises like Marvel, Nat Geo, Pixar, and Star Wars. There’s even a Disney+, Hulu, ESPN+ bundle ($12.99/mo.) that lets you stream from up to 4 devices at a time.
For family-friendly live TV, Frndly TV offers an affordable solution at just $5.99/mo. This gives you access to 14 live channels, including CuriosityStream, Game Show Network, Hallmark Channel, and Outdoor Channel. It even comes with unlimited cloud DVR storage that lets you record as many programs as you want and save them for 30-90 days. You can stream from up to four devices at a time, depending on your plan.
With plans starting from $5.99/mo., Hulu dominates the streaming industry with thousands of titles and extensive customization options. It even has a live TV option for $54.99/mo. The service lets you add premium channels like Cinemax, HBO, Showtime, and STARZ to your package. Hulu also offers simultaneous streaming on up to 2 devices, although Hulu + Live TV subscribers also have the option to purchase an unlimited screens add-on for an additional $9.99/mo.
With plans starting at $8.99/mo., Netflix is among the most popular options in the market, mainly because of its original content line-up and seamless user interface. You can watch hit originals like Atypical, Marriage Story, Mindhunter, Stranger Things, and The Irishman. The Basic plan only allows 1 simultaneous stream, but you can upgrade to Premium to stream on up to 4 devices at a time.
Amazon Prime Video
You can access Amazon Prime Video as a standalone streaming service for $8.99/mo. The video streaming service comes iwith all Amazon Prime memberships ($12.99/mo.) This service features tons of popular and classic content as well as exclusive originals such as Good Omens, Hunters, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, and Sneaky Pete. You can access Prime Video from up to 3 devices at a time, meaning you get to watch videos on two other devices besides your Roku Streaming Stick+.
One of the most affordable and customizable live TV streaming services, Sling TV offers plans starting from $30/mo. Even the most basic package gives you access to 40+ live channels and more than 50 thousand on-demand movies and shows. It also provides up to 10 hours of cloud DVR storage for free. Depending on which plan you get, the service lets you stream from up to 3 devices at a time.
The Roku Channel explained
Roku offers an extensive list of app options, but to sweeten the Roku experience even more, they offer The Roku Channel. This is a streaming channel that delivers free live and on-demand TV and movies to anyone with a Roku account.
After a while of watching The Roku Channel, Roku will add shows recommended specifically for you based on your previous viewing habits. But in addition, you’ll have an arsenal of content to choose from and live TV options like USA Today, Hallmark, and TMZ. There is no shortage of older classics like Who’s The Boss, I Dream of Jeannie and Magnum P.I. But there are also comedies, cooking shows, educational shows, music channels, documentaries and so much more.
Roku Streaming Stick+ features
Audio and Visual
The Roku Streaming Stick Plus offers superior picture quality and uninterrupted streaming for 4K movies when viewed on a 4K TV. It supports up to 4K HDR videos, which are available with certain plans on Amazon Vudu, Apple TV, Netflix, and YouTube. Users can enjoy the 4K Spotlight channel full of 4K movies.The Roku Streaming Stick+ works with HD TVs, 4K UHD TVs, and 4K UHD HDR TVs with an HDMI 2.0a port. Note that it doesn’t have Dolby Vision HDR, so it delivers all HDR videos as HDR10.
This convenient streaming stick supports digital stereo over HDMI, DTS Digital Surround pass through over HDMI and pass-through of Dolby-encoded audio over HDMI.
It comes with a voice remote that allows you to easily change the volume or mute a video using voice commands or by pressing the remote buttons. You can use the Roku remote to control the Roku Streaming Stick Plus, but also to power up the TV, eliminating the extra TV remote. As it works with Alexa and Google Assistant, you can seamlessly sync the Roku Streaming Stick+ with your entertainment and smart home devices.
For parents, the biggest drawback is that it doesn’t come with built-in parental control features — you’ll have to rely on the options that come with your streaming service.
The final cut
Considering the most popular options in the market, the Roku Streaming Stick Plus offers the best combination of performance and affordability. This makes it perfect for those in search of top-notch streaming quality at a competitive price. But before you decide to buy it, compare prices on Amazon and other stores to get the best deal. Also compare it to all other Roku devices. In addition, check out all the available streaming services to see which one best meets your needs. Families should consider Disney+ as it also comes with basic access to Hulu and ESPN+. But you won’t be able to add premium channels like HBO and STARZ to this bundle. Hulu + Live TV, Sling TV, and YouTube TV all function as live TV cable replacement services and feature tons of add-ons. And Frndly TV is an excellent option if you enjoy watching family-friendly live programs.