The Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus outperforms its predecessor in performance and speed. It can now play Dolby Vision material of the highest quality and is equipped with the improved Voice Remote Pro. It keeps all of the advantages of Streaming Stick Plus while enhancing its features and functionality.
The Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus is a deliciously simple operating system that offers ultra-HD streaming, movie quality, and speed that anybody could require. It does all of this at a reasonable cost. The better Voice Remote Pro software is also included.
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It has two keys that might have been configured in any way you want; they always function, and a rechargeable battery. The company’s most expensive streaming stick to date, the Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus, is excellent. The Roku Streaming Stick Plus, the model before it, was perfect. Most Roku devices function pretty well and won’t break the bank.
Although the Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus isn’t a significant improvement, I do have to question if streaming hardware can be much better than it currently is. In short, the Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus review will demonstrate how it combines all the qualities of the Streaming Stick Plus with a few more capabilities to make it a strong contender for the title of best Roku gadget.
Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus Pros and Cons
|Included with this purchase is the Roku Voice Remote Pro.||Lacks Dolby Atmos.|
|Dolby Vision.||A minor improvement over the previous model.|
|Speedy performance.||It has a price tag of $20 more than the otherwise similar Streaming Stick 4K|
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Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus Price and Availability
The price difference between the $50 Roku Streaming Stick 4K and the $70 Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus is $20. The Roku Voice Remote Pro, which costs $30 on its own, is included, which accounts for the price difference. Essentially, this bundle costs $10 less than purchasing the parts individually.
Its main rivals are Chrome with Google TV ($50) and the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K Max ($55). Additionally, there is the standard Roku Streaming Stick 4K. (The same device, but without the Voice Remote Pro). Preorders for the Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus are already being taken; it will be on sale on October 17.
Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus Design
The Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus is a tiny, square device that fits discretely behind your display and is identical to its predecessor. It features an HDMI connector on one end and is 3.7 x 0.8 x 0.5 inches. There is a port for its USB power cord on the side. An innovative feature of that cable is an in-line, long-range Wi-Fi receiver that is 3.3 x 0.6 x 0.3 inches in size.
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After you put the Streaming Stick 4K plus into your TV, you won’t need to look at it again or give it a second thought. It shares this characteristic with its major rivals, the Chrome with Google TV and the somewhat bigger Fire TV Stick 4K (4.3 x 1.3 x 0.5 inches) (6.4 x 2.4 x 0.5 inches).
RokuOS 10.5 Interface and Mobile App
Regarding the Roku interface, which has been the same for several years, I don’t have anything new to add. The Roku interface is straightforward, tidy, and simple to use. Similar to the Apple TV 4K, which costs $179, applications are shown on the Home screen as square boxes, although the Streaming Stick 4K Plus costs far less.
One of the reasons I prefer Roku over Fire TV, which subliminally uses applications to push Amazon’s content, is the interface’s beauty. Even the Roku Channel isn’t shoved in your face; it’s just listed with the others. Most of the enhancements in the new RokuOS 10.5 pertain to voice functionality. The feature that users will like the most is the option to speak passwords loudly on certain on-screen keyboards.
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On Chrome and Fire TV Stick 4K, this capability is absent. With Google TV, Roku has an advantage right now. Another audio enhancement allows you to use a command to start Netflix programs and Spotify music immediately. I gave it a go and asked Roku to play Maid on Netflix.
Since “Maid” is a challenging word, Roku accessed the Netflix search page. However, the identical command for Squid Game was successful and led to the title page of the Korean drama. I’m not upset that it didn’t immediately begin playing the episode I was in the midst of (instead, allowing me to choose where to start).
Your outcomes may differ since this area only permits The Roku Channel’s free linear TV content (commercial programming from brands like This Old House, ABC News Live, NBC News Now, and vice).
You can use any pair of headphones with the Roku mobile app for private listening. This year, Roku improved its wireless headphone functionality to lessen latency.
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Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus Performance
The Streaming Stick 4K Plus now has a new quad-core CPU from Roku, which the developers say makes it 30% quicker than the previous version. The Chrome with Google TV and the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K is the top $50 streaming devices, but I didn’t have one to compare to the new gadget.
To time the speed of opening Netflix, YouTube, Disney Plus, Sling TV, and Apple TV Plus, individuals restarted the Roku Streaming Stick 4K, the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K, and the Chromecast with Google TV. As you can see from the table below, the timings are generally consistent.
|Roku Streaming Stick 4K||Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K|
|Netflix (load time in seconds)||3||23||2|
|YouTube (load time in seconds)||7||7||5|
|Disney Plus (load time in seconds)||9||10||12|
|Sling TV (load time in seconds)||10||27||8|
|Apple TV Plus (load time in seconds)||11||9||8|
With this kind of eyeball/stopwatch test, the margin of error is relatively modest. But the key finding is that for most essential applications, the Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus outperforms the Fire TV Stick 4K in general.
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The Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus seems quick in my tests. The average app load time was between 5 and 6 seconds. However, on rare occasions, it was closer to 10 seconds. Although fast scrolling through Netflix or Disney Plus sometimes seemed sluggish, navigation was generally fluid.
Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus Audio and Video
The Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus gets the Dolby Vision visual update, even if its performance doesn’t seem much better than its predecessor. Roku has now caught up to the Fire TV Stick 4K and Chrome, with Google TV having that feature.
Everything I saw looked terrific, from Loki on Disney Plus to Ted Lasso on Apple TV Plus to Wonder Woman 1984 on HBO Max. The footage was brilliant, bright, clear, and sharp. The contrast between the blacks and the colors was excellent.
The players’ red, blue, and yellow colors in the Ted Lasso season 2 finales stood out richly and brilliantly against the pitch’s more subdued green. The Fire TV Stick 4K and Chrome with Google TV offer Dolby Atmos surround sound, but the Streaming Stick 4K plus does not.
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Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus Search
The efficiency of Roku’s search is similar to that of Fire TV. It’s preferable to use the voice feature rather than typing in searches on the app or the remote. When using voice recognition, as opposed to using regular search, a better-looking page of thumbnail appears.
When I searched for “Harry Potter,” Roku returned a “zone,” including all the films and other works with the cast members. When I looked for Oscar Isaac, it gave me a list of his most recent movies and television programs and opportunities to rent or purchase them. These included the fantastic Ex Machina and A Most Violent Year, which I could watch for free.
However, the Taylor Swift search result was disappointing since it just attempted to direct me to Spotify. Video results for Swift need to include Disney Plus’s Folklore: The Long Pond Sessions.
Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus Specs
|Resolution||Up to 4K UHD at 60 fps|
|Wireless||802.11ac MIMO dual-band Wi-Fi|
|Dimensions||3.7 x 0.8 x 0.5 inches|
|Colors/ Remote||Black/Roku Voice Remote Pro|
|Audio||Dolby-encoded audio, DTS Digital Surround, Digital stereo|
|Video||Dolby Vision, HDR10/10+ and HLG|
Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus Remote
The Voice Remote Pro is the single feature that sets the Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus apart from the standard Stick 4K. The Voice Remote Pro offers a pleasant square form factor that fits comfortably in your hand, much like the standard remote. It contains all the typical controls for power, playing, and navigation and a headset port for private listening. There are four branded keys for Hulu, Apple TV Plus, Disney Plus, and Netflix. The remote does contain two configurable keys that remember voice instructions, which could be troublesome for someone without these services.
The Voice Remote Pro differs from the standard remote in two critical ways, in addition to the programmable buttons. The first is that there is no need for AAA batteries since it is rechargeable. Whatever the case, the rechargeable battery makes the remote somewhat heavier than the standard version, but not having to go through my trash drawer makes up for it.
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The Voice Remote Pro also has an always-listening function that can be turned on and off. Say “Hey Roku…” followed by a command while it is on. I used it to start Netflix, browse the site, look for programs, and manage playback. However, remember to communicate properly and audibly.
Roku reportedly misinterpreted numerous of my instructions, including “pause” (I tried searching for “pals”), since I don’t do the latter. Additionally, with always-on, you can quickly locate the remote when it eventually falls into the sofa.
Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus Content and Apps
There are probably hundreds of Roku apps you have never even heard of that have practically every program you could ever need or desire. One of the most important ones is absent: YouTube TV. Streaming channels shop removed YouTube TV’s app after a minor dispute between the two firms. Subscribers of YouTube TV now need to use the standard YouTube app to access the service.
Therefore, it is still technically present, finding it only needs one or two more clicks. The Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus supports screen mirroring but does not support other streaming types (such Chromecast with Nest cam feeds) (unlike the Fire TV Stick 4K).
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This Roku Streaming Stick 4K Plus review has shown that it is not much quicker or more powerful than the prior model, necessitating an instant upgrade. It isn’t easy to see how Roku devices might be much improved since they are dependable and effective at what they do.
You could save $20 by using Chrome with Google TV if you insist on Dolby Atmos, but you would also pass up the rechargeable remote control with its customizable keys. However, the inclusion of Dolby Vision and the Voice Remote Pro with the Streaming Stick 4K Plus brings about tremendous changes.
If you’re in the market for a new gadget, it comes with a lovely easy OS, all the ultra-HD streaming, video quality, and speed that anybody could ever require, and it is pretty reasonably priced. You won’t need to switch to a new gadget for a while, so it’s a good investment.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will Roku Streaming Stick plus work on any TV?
The Roku 4K Ultra streaming box can play 4K content on a 4K TV, but it also functions with older high-definition TVs and any TV with an HDMI port. (Any 4K-capable Roku player will work on an HDTV.) Keep in mind that it won’t display any 4K content on your HDTV.
Does Roku Stick cost monthly?
Both utilizing a Roku device and viewing free channels are free each month. Only subscription channels like Netflix, cable substitutes like Sling TV, or rentals from platforms like Apple TV need payment.
What is the difference between Roku and Roku stick?
Roku Streaming Stick and Roku can link with voice-enabled applications like Alexa and Hey Google, but only the Roku Streaming Stick includes a voice-controlled controller. To fully connect your devices, however, only the Roku Express can sync with Apple AirPlay.
Is Roku Streaming Stick+ worth it?
If you haven’t recently changed your set, the stick is a terrific method to convert a non-smart TV into a smart TV. It does seem speedy and straightforward to load up applications. Notable additions include HDR10 Plus, which enhances colors and brightness, and Dolby Vision compatibility.