Hooked your Roku up to your telly and wondering what the heck to do next? Settle down and get your stream locked into these essential apps.
Pretty much everyone is addicted to streaming video. Services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime have revolutionised how we watch telly, giving us everything we want, when we want it.
Roku is a media hub which takes that convenience to the next level. It’s filled with loads of different channels – they’re basically apps, but Roku insists on calling them channels because, well, we don’t know. Each of these channels offers access to different shows and movies, so between them they give the broadest selection possible.
To that end, we’ve put together this guide to the best channels on Roku, so you stream safe in the knowlegde you’re not missing out.
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1. Google Play
Google Play is a necessity if you own an Android device. It’s from here that you download your apps for your phone or tablet.
It’s not exclusive to Android users, though. Anyone, including Roku users, can access the store to buy or rent films, books and TV episodes. It gets some pretty big releases and they’re a little cheaper than from rivals such as the Sky Store.
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Pegged as a media streamlining tool, Plex is designed to put all your favourite media – whether that’s photos, video, film or music – into one convenient place. That content is then shareable across multiple screens.
You can also share it with your mates, making it easier to show off your photography skills or the tunes you love. Plus it’s totally free. There is, however, a premium service that brings some neat features such offline viewing. It’s priced at £31.99 per year or you can choose the one-off lifetime payment of £119.99.
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Roku lets you put the online retail giant’s Prime Video streaming service on your telly, although you’ll need to splash out £5.99 a month for the subscription.
Happily, Amazon offers a month-long free trial and students can get the full package at a heavily discounted price. Join up now and you’ll be in time to watch The Grand Tour when it lands in November.
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This is one for the armchair adrenaline junkies out there. The GoPro channel is now available on the Roku store, letting you get your extreme sports fix from the comfort of the sofa.
Whether you’re watching a descent into a volcano or user-created videos of skiing fails, it’s bound to be totally gnarly, bro.
Use your home cinema system to listen to your favourite tunes, thanks to Roku and Spotify.
The free app enables you to seek out artists, albums and curated playlists. However, you’ll need to pay £9.99 a month to enjoy ad-free music and download content for offline listening.
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Don’t keep watching Countryfile on your teeny laptop screen. Thanks to the iPlayer channel on Roku, you can catch up with the farmyard gang and all those other amazing BBC shows such as Great British B… Oh. And Top G… Hmm. Look, whatever, the Beeb is still great.
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Rent or buy TV shows or films from Wuaki.tv and watch them on your telly. It’s pretty similar to Google Play, but there’s no harm in having some additional options on hand for those quiet evenings in.
There isn’t a huge selection of recent releases compared to the Sky Store and Google Play, although prices top out at just £12 to buy the most popular films.
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8. Now TV
Now TV is a nifty service that lets you avoid being involved in complicated contracts from traditional TV providers. Think of it as a pay-as-you-go deal but for television.
Simply buy a pass from Now TV to gain access to various different TV channels. The entertainment pass costs £6.99 per month and the sports package is available as either a daily, weekly or monthly pass – the monthly option costs £33.99 per month.
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9. ITV Player
ITV isn’t just about quiz shows and The X Factor, y’know. Catch up with the network’s best shows, including international cycling and the Europa League, using its catch-up channel on Roku.
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10. Sky Store
Gain access to the wealth of blockbuster TV shows and films that Sky has on offer through the Sky Store channel. You can purchase movies and shows outright, or rent them.
However, it comes at a premium. Whether renting or purchasing, it does cost a little more than it would through Wuaki.tv or Google Play. Expect to pay about £14 for the latest movie releases.
Gone are the days when you and your mates or family had to huddle around a tiny screen to peer at YouTube videos. Watch all your favourite cat videos and epic fails on the big screen via the YouTube Channel on Roku.
12. 4 On Demand
Channel Four is the undisputed king of edgy television and has some mega box sets on offer. What’s more, it’s a totally free service – you’ll just have to sit through some ads.
Take your binge watching to the big screen, courtesy of the Netflix channel on Roku. Obviously, it’s reliant on you paying a subscription, of which there are three types. You can pay £5.99 for the basic service, £7.49 for standard or £8.99 for the premium deal.
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Love your Roku? Let us know in the comments below.