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What is Roku TV and How Does a Roku TV Work?




Earth-shaking development has taken place in the TV industry in the past few decades, from only a few TV stations can be received through antennas to now a world of unlimited possibilities is opened up by smart TVs through networking.

It has led to the emergence of many emerging terms as the marketing concept of TV manufacturers. Roku TV is one of them.



(Alt text: TCL Roku TV)



So now, the question is what is the best Roku TV and whether you should go for a Roku TV rather than other smart TVs. With this article, we are going to take an in-depth look at the Roku TV and differences between Roku TV and smart TV to help you make the right choice.


What is Roku?

Before diving into Roku TV, let us talk about Roku. Roku is a company that is known for making media streaming devices that run the Roku software (known as Roku OS). The company was launched back in 2008 and is releasing new versions of software and hardware on a daily basis.

Unlike other smart TVs, Roku smart TVs are known to be focused on simple ways to access and stream video and audio content on a TV. Roku TV lets you access Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Prime, and hundreds of other similar services bundled with specialized channels that can stream everything from interesting to strange.


What is Roku TV?

A Roku TV can be explained as a TV that runs the Roku OS. Roku TVs are known for providing a simple and clutter-free layout. Ever since its launch, Roku TV has been famous among regular customers and tech enthusiasts alike, among which is TCL TV. Roku TV features a bunch of free streaming apps like YouTube and Netflix. Moreover, if your apps are not preinstalled, then do not worry. You can still download your favorite streaming apps through the Roku Channel Store.


However, buying a Roku TV can cost slightly more than a regular smart TV. Considering the fact that you won't have to invest in a separate Roku streaming device, that is quite acceptable.


How Does a Roku TV Work?

When it comes to working, all Roku devices are similar, whether it is a Roku player, Roku enabled soundbar, or a Roku TV. All Roku devices need an active internet connection to work. Roku devices can work offline too, but in order to take full advantage of the Roku platform, internet connection is recommended.


(Alt text: Home screen of a TCL Roku TV)



Let’s take the TCL Roku smart TV as an example to figure out how does a Roku TV work in detail. As for internet connectivity is concerned, TCL Roku TVs give you an ethernet option to hard-wire the connection to your router. Plus, all Roku TVs work with Wi-Fi too. Once you get your TCL Roku smart TV, you need to set up the device that includes you to create a free Roku account. Once done with the setup, you can start using your TCL Roku TV right away.


After setting up your TCL Roku smart TV, the first thing you see is your Roku home screen. The home screen has the main menu on the left and some rectangular graphic grids on the right. These rectangles are channels like YouTube, Netflix, The Roku Channel, and other customized "Channels." These channels are, in fact, apps, but since Roku TV is more focused on providing a TV experience, Roku calls these channels as you can watch them.


To watch a channel, you use the remote to navigate to the one you want to watch, then click "OK." The channel will, but if a channel requires a paid subscription (like Netflix or Disney+), you will be asked to create an account or log in. For this process, you need a second device like your smartphone or PC, But keep in mind this is a time only process.


And if you want to change the channel or get back to the home screen, you can use the home button on your remote to do so. Selecting and launching the core of TCL Roku TV, but TCL Roku smart TV is capable of doing more than that.


Now, let us break down how Roku TV works into smaller categories:

Add new channels. The Roku TV is so popular because the user can add new channels to the home screen. Roku Channel Store has plenty of channels, from essentials like Spotify and YouTube to sports and NEWS channels. You can add new channels using the Roku Channel Store, web browser, or through Roku's own mobile app. You can add channels by searching them or through the helpful categories.


Searching for something to watch. With TCL Roku TV, you have access to a sheer amount of content to watch, but this much content can be overwhelming. Nevertheless, thanks to the universal search feature, you can search for content based on the title or actor.


Using voice Commands. Most Roku TVs come with a microphone built into the remote. Therefore, you can use simple voice commands like "play," "pause," or "fast forward thirty seconds." You can also use voice commands to control channels, inputs, and volume.


What Are the Differences Between Roku TV and Smart TV?

The concepts of smart TV and Roku TV occupy the public's vision almost at the same time confusing most of the public. Some people even believe that they are the same thing. In fact, Roku TV and smart TV are different in some aspects.


User Experience. The major difference between Roku TV and smart TV is the user experience. The experience across smart TVs depends on the built-in OS. On the other hand, While the  Roku TV is more than a smart TV, it also has a minimal but intuitive UI that allows users to navigate through the OS easily.


Processing power. When it comes to processing, the difference between Roku TV and smart TV is almost negligible. But in some cases, smart TVs can outperform Roku TVs as they support more powerful quantum processors.


Casting, mirroring and sharing function. There is not a lot of difference between Roku TV and smart TV when it comes to screen casting and mirroring. Almost All Roku TVs and smart TVs support screen mirroring through android or windows devices.


Video and audio quality. When talking about video quality, the Roku TV is slightly limited with support up to only 4K. But some smart TVs can even go up to 8K. Talking about audio, the difference between Roku TV and smart TV is minor as both support Dolby Atmos.


Smart TV or Roku TV, How to Choose?

Suppose you are a buyer and are confused between a Roku TV and smart TV. Then let us guide you so that you can make the right decision.


When it comes to Roku TV vs. smart TV, Roku TV clearly provides a much more sophisticated and easier-to-use interface. This makes Roku TV a clear winner for novice users getting a smart TV for the first. Roku TV is also perfect for users who want a seamless experience.


Roku TV is much more effective when it comes to performance and pricing, as you do not need any external streaming device to get the most out of your Roku TV.


How to Choose the Best Roku TV Brand?

If you are considering buying a Roku TV, keep in mind that it must have a good LED display, and performance should be on par with a smart TV without blowing too much budget. A TCL Roku smart TV checks all these boxes. Here is a recommendation from us to guide you on what is the best Roku TV.


(Alt text: TCL 6-series Roku smart TV)



The TCL 6-Series is a TCL Roku smart TV that has accomplished a lot when it comes to delivering the complete package you would expect from a TCL Roku smart TV. It boasts excellent UHD images and comprehensive functions of the class-leading Roku TV while being in an affordable price range. The mini-LEDs used in this TCL Roku TV maximize the brightness for better display quality even in brighter environments while managing to keep black levels dark and overall contrast impressive. The TCL 6-Series TV also features THX-certified game mode, which ups the game adding premium gaming features like minimal lag and real-time variable frame rate to guarantee an immersive gaming experience for you.



If you are a new consumer in the smart TV game, then it is most likely that you might be confused between a Roku smart TV and a conventional smart TV. But the thing is, Roku TVs are much more straightforward and user-friendly when it comes to their UI elements.

Roku TV doesn't confuse the user with useless clutter and keeps the user hooked while providing a seamless experience. Simply put, Roku TVs are much more capable than a traditional smart TV, thanks to streamlined OS and rich feature sets.