TVs are changing. As cord-cutters, DVR users are all about the best streaming devices for watching movies and TV shows on your television, which puts Roku at the top of our list. Roku is one of the best ways to stream content on home television sets, offering a full package of options for catching up on all of your favorite shows while using very little bandwidth. With thousands of channels and an easy-to-use menu, Roku has become a go-to device for people who want top-quality entertainment without a cable subscription.
Of course, Roku is full of features that you may not have explored yet or even known about. Therefore, we’ve put together a list of eight tips and tricks to help you get the most out of Roku.
Connect Roku to Your Smart TV
This tip may not always apply to certain television models, but it’s a great option if you have a compatible Smart TV like Samsung or LG. Moreover, you can even connect Roku to Vizio TV without having to buy any additional cables or adapters. If you love Roku’s interface better than your smart TV’s, this is a great way to upgrade. Roku uses an app that is found on most of the popular operating systems including Windows 10, Android TV, and Amazon Fire TV. As long as your Roku is connected directly to your television using an HDMI cable, then you should have no problem following this method. With all of your channels available from one place, Roku can help make your home entertainment setup more organized and simple for everyone in the family.
Connect Your Android Device to Control It
Roku has an official mobile application, but you can also use your Android phone or tablet if you want to quickly control your entertainment experience without having to search through the main menu. To get started, connect your device via Wi-Fi and make sure both devices are connected on the same network. Next, download the official Roku app on Google Play and sign in using either your account information or Facebook credentials. Once done, go back into your settings menu on Roku’s home screen, where you should see a “Wi-Fi Control” option. Here, you can toggle the ability to control your Roku via your Android device.
Take Advantage of Freebies
Roku constantly offers special deals and discounts on new channels and devices, so go to the main menu and scroll down to “Limited Time Offers” for a quick peek at everything available. New codes are posted every month, so even if you’ve looked through them before, it might be worth another look just in case something has changed. The best part about this section is that Roku doesn’t require you to be a member to access it, which means everyone can take advantage of the awesome freebies and discounts. You just have to stay tuned and take action at the right time.
Enable Parental Controls
While some kids may love watching any show or movie they want on their own television set without anyone else being able to see what they are enjoying, parents would rather know exactly what their child is watching. Fortunately, Roku has a great dedicated section for parental controls where you can make sure kids only have access to shows and movies that are appropriate for their age group. These options can be found under “Settings & Players” on your Roku dashboard. There, you’ll find the ability to control certain features, such as blocking specific channels or movies from being viewed based on their ratings. 5. Get More Than $50 Worth of Entertainment
Extend Your Playback Time by Using External Chargers
If you have a Roku Streaming Stick, then this tip is for you, since there’s no way to plug in an AC adapter. While most modern televisions have USB ports built-in, they don’t always provide enough power for streaming devices that run hot when being used frequently. To save battery life without losing too much functionality, try using an external charger to keep your device powered up when you’re not watching TV If worse comes to worst and your device does die during a binge-watching session, just remember that it has about two hours of playback time on average before needing a recharge.
Take Advantage of the Roku Developer Channel
Normally, Roku provides a way to install certain channels that are not available on its main channel store by using what is known as an “ad hoc channel.” While this method works for installing channels without any issue, you should only attempt installing the developer channel if you know what you’re doing. The reason being is that ad hoc channels have historically been unstable and there’s no guarantee Roku won’t freeze when trying to use it. Therefore, this method is only recommended for experienced users who are willing to troubleshoot any problems that may arise.
Get the Most Out of Your Streaming Stick with Mobile-to-TV Mirroring
If you don’t like plugging your Roku into the television via HDMI cable, then you can wirelessly mirror content from your smartphone or tablet instead. This way, every time you turn on your smart device’s screen, it will automatically appear on your TV without having to lift a finger. The two devices should be connected over Wi-Fi Direct using the information found under “Settings” on both devices, followed by selecting “Screen Mirroring.” Afterward, simply select which type of media you want to share and enjoy! Keep in mind that you can only mirror content from compatible apps, so you won’t be able to play any locally stored videos on your phone.
Use Roku Codes to Get More Channel Recommendations
If you’re ever unsure about which channels are popular with other users, then all you need to do is consult Roku’s main channel store. Instead of scrolling through the list until you find something that interests you, try entering one of the free Roku codes available online instead. If you manage to find a working code, then your list of recommended channels will suddenly become much more personalized and unique compared to all the other suggestions found on Roku’s website. As a bonus, using these codes won’t track any browsing activity like signing in does, since they don’t use your account information at all.
Roku can be a great tool for anyone looking to cut the cord and reduce their monthly entertainment costs for good. However, many people don’t realize that there’s still some functionality found in the Settings screens like those mentioned above. By using these tips and tricks, you’ll not only learn how to unlock new features on your device but also get more value out of streaming services over time.