Roku
Overall Satisfaction Rating
1.37/5
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Based on 99 ratings submitted in the last year
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Roku

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Last updated: Nov. 19, 2017

194 Roku Consumer Reviews and Complaints

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 19, 2017

I purchased a Roku brand television at Wal-Mart, the price seemed reasonable for a low range 32" inch television. As this TV was intended for a guest room I didn't think it important to buy an expensive one. Upon getting it home and setting and powering it up, I got a rude awakening. First I was required to connect it to the internet, as it would not advance the menu until I did. After connecting the manufacturer demanded $69.00 U.S. dollars to "activate" MY T.V.!!!! I had just paid $138.00 + plus tax for.

Customer service would not even entertain the thought of me simply plugging in my satellite provider...NO! I had to subscribe to their service package to use my product. Ever bought a car and been told you have to spend another $1000.00 for the keys? B.S... Couldn't even hook up my kids' video game. Won't unlock until you spend. Product should state clearly on packaging "ACTIVATION FEE REQUIRED"... Misleading and unethical. Bet Walmart regrets this in 6 months. I took it back and exchanged it for a wonderful "un-smart" Sanyo that is great.

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Nov. 18, 2017

As I am sorting through a pile of disappointing electronic products to be disposed of, I am confronted with the biggest disappointment of all, our Roku 1 streaming player. It has been sitting around, unused for a couple of years, so I can't recollect all of the details, but it was memorable enough that I decided to go through the bother of opening a Consumer Affairs account to let other people know of the dangers of being seduced by electronics that don't work. I was unable to rectify the problems at the time with customer service.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 18, 2017

I’ve read a lot of these reviews and not sure what has gone wrong with their Roku sticks, but I have two sticks that work greatly. I have had them for over a year, NEVER paid any kind of activation fee, only pay for the apps that require subscription fees. My kids have one in their room and it works perfectly. When we can’t find the remote we’ve used the remote app on my iPhone and I can control the sticks just the same as with a remote. I recommend Roku to anyone looking for a less expensive option to cable.

Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Nov. 16, 2017

When I tried to activate my Roku they asked me for 99$. They only asked for this after I allowed them into my computer and gave them all my personal information including my credit card number. I find this practice to be deceptive and dishonest. I feel somewhat vulnerable now realizing what sort of unscrupulous company this is. I know they are linked with Comcast and I encourage Comcast to sever this relationship as it will only hurt the reputation they have worked so hard for.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 22, 2017

I like my Roku Express. Sometimes it drops my WiFi connection. I don't know what some people are talking about? Roku activation is free. You only pay for subscriptions. You can activate your device online. You don't have to call to activate. I have never had to pay an activation fee. People are being scammed. It's a good little box that gives plenty of services. It's not cable!

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Oct. 21, 2017

Just purchased Roku from HSN paid 89.00. Went through the activation process. Watched today for the first time. After I shut my TV off and tried to resume watching, my TV shut down and I couldn't get it to turn back on for a while. Finally got it back on and could not sign in. Would not accept my password or the new code it was giving me. Called customer support (India - barely understood them), they want to charge me 186.00 new activation fee. Was hung up on twice. They should tell you have to register your sticks. We were told it would be 186 every time we had to activate the account. We were told don't ask why. I will return this to HSN. They should be ashamed to sell the piece of garbage. Never again.

Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Oct. 21, 2017

Roku has now broken my Roku with faulty firmware. They removed the option to downgrade my firmware to allow me to use a stable version of firmware to now a faulty firmware which keeps my device dead. Roku continues to try to force my Roku to upgrade to the faulty firmware which then continues to break more options while they have decided to ignore all my messages and support tickets. I will never recommend anyone to purchasing a Roku product as long as I live. Worst Business I have ever had to deal with in my life. Beware.

Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Oct. 19, 2017

Bought two Roku Streaming sticks - both failed within 6 months. Here's the real kicker - even though they're both under warranty, Roku seems unwilling to send me a replacement. I threw the first one away - but, I should be able to get a warranty replacement on at least ONE of them. At $50 a piece, I am now out a lot of money. The most recently failed one was only FIVE MONTHS OLD. These things are JUNK, people - probably from China, but I am not sure. Anyway, they don't last. I'd advise finding a different way to stream content on your TV. Sad, too, because WHEN they worked, they seemed pretty good. Incidentally, the $10 Asurion protection plan I purchased to cover this (because of the failure of the first one) didn't cover it, because it's under original warranty. Roku won't be getting any further business from me.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 14, 2017

I own 5 Roku 2's, 4 Roku 3's, a TCL Roku TV and 1 streaming stick. I absolutely love them! There are so many apps available through Roku that I hardly have to switch to TV. Any questions I've had have been answered quickly by Roku support. I even had a remote replaced for free when a player was out of warranty. They are extremely user-friendly, even easy for a child to use.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 5, 2017

This is the most pathetic thing I have ever seen. I have a Roku T.V. and somehow it has gotten to the point that I can't watch regular T.V. channels. I am going to have to buy a new T.V. just to watch T.V. That sounds crazy but it is the truth.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 4, 2017

Roku Premiere Plus: Same thing here. Had 2 for some time now, one was a stick. It was slow and hanging up all the time, So decided to go buy a new one, couldn't activate, called them and lo and behold nothing but high pressure to pay a activation fee. I convinced him that I was replacing an old one I had. He told me that if I had more than 2 players I have to pay a fee, a high fee for lifetime activation so that if I buy more of their crappy products I would be covered, I am still watching free programming, I will never ever buy another one and I tell everyone to do the same because these things are laden with fees and lies. These devices are good for one thing, Scammers to get at your money. Stay far away from these infested fee riding devices.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 3, 2017

I purchased them Roku stick at Walmart thinking it would be SOMEWHAT comparable to the Amazon fire stick. It is not. When I tried to return it at Walmart it had been too long. There's a return policy for electronics for a certain amount of time. They told me I needed to call Roku and return it there. When I did Roku told me I was not able to return it so now I'm stuck with this piece of ** device that I won't even use. I would never recommend anybody using this company for any type of devices. Both customer service agents that I talk to you helped me in no way whatsoever. If you were thinking about buying any of their devices, DON'T! $40 went down the drain when it could have been spent on getting the Amazon Fire stick for my daughter's TV.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 2, 2017

NFL Sunday Ticket - I paid 109.00 for this and it does not work. Thank the Good Lord I paid through PayPal. I've emailed Roku customer support twice. No answer so far. They haven't even replied to PayPal. This service stinks.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 2, 2017

I've had my remote for less than a year and it doesn't work anymore. I tried to reset. I've changed the batteries several times. It won't work. I had to put the app on my phone. I priced the replacement remotes online and it's $30. WHAT? I have to pay that for a remote I've had LESS than a year?! My Hulu doesn't work with the remote. Every time I tried to watch something on the system I pay for monthly, it tells me not able to load. I can watch on my tablet... Not my Roku. I tried resetting the entire Roku but not able to because I'm not able to pair without the doggone remote. Now my TV is stuck on a "pair your remote" screen. Ridiculous!!

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 28, 2017

This is by far the worst product I've ever encountered, had the TCL Roku TV for less than a year and after getting the run around from Target and getting nowhere with troubleshooting while speaking to customer service, the end result? I had to eat the money spent for this product. Next time they should warn customers to save a little more to get another brand of tv. This was a piece of crap. Customer service was just as bad.

Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Sept. 27, 2017

Many serious problems with this company. 1st my account gets hacked and have to pay them $100 to fix my computer. Which didn't work. They trashed my computer and people were still getting into my bank account. Had to go to bank to have my account changed. Then just tonight my Roku account was shut down and they want to charge me another $100 to turn it back on. When I bought this product a year ago I was never told that Roku was going to change their policy and start charging a $100 activation fee. I just paid my bill for my sling tv. Asked for my money back and was told it's not their problem. This took 6 phone calls cause they kept hanging up on me. They laughed. WARNING DO NOT BY ANY ROKU PRODUCT.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 24, 2017

Internet provider told me that DirecTV now is streaming. Roku has the app but apparently you can't use it unless you upgrade your Roku. I'm not doing that. I have enough invested in devices from Roku. They were more interested in my PC than app. Tricked me into giving Credit card. Fake. Stressed because of all the changes from my bank to my ROKU apps that I pay for like Netflix has been compromised. They charged a hefty fee of 199.99 and I gave them access to my pc. Changed my way of trust!

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 22, 2017

If I had it to do over again, I would have saved my money! The Roku player I purchased often requires a complete reload and reset. For no reason. It is a frustrating and time consuming process. I wouldn't mind that so much of customer service was helpful. If they respond, they take no responsibility but rather place the blame on me, my internet service, or whatever. But worse, sometimes they don't respond at all. Within the last 48 hours I've made multiple attempts via chat and email to find out why my account isn't working. No response at all.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 18, 2017

Got 2 free months HBO when I bought Roku player. Signed up for HBO now. I could never get HBO now on any other devices. So, I canceled on Aug 28th. Got a bill on credit card for monthly subscription for Aug. 22 to Sept. 22. Called and wanted bill pro-rated or credited. Mel did not want to do this. After I informed him this was illegal and I would pursue it, he credited my account. He did send an e-mail confirming this. I will have to wait and see. I also send a letter to the bank disputing these charges. Do not trust this company. I call on all agencies to investigate this company.

Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Sept. 18, 2017

I purchased a TCL-Roku television from Target in August 2017. Six weeks later, TV started increasing in sound volume with no help, would not change channels with remote. Contacted Target, informed that the problem was in manufacturer’s hands. After troubleshooting with TCL support, told the TV was cracked and said it could have occurred in the store, during transporting or home. They would not replace the TV nor Target would because 30 days was up, my paid warranty was useless. I felt that I received no help from an obviously foreign-owned product. Would strongly recommend that anyone considering this product not purchase due to poor quality of product and them not standing behind their product.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 17, 2017

Bought a Hitachi Roku TV. We already have an Amazon Fire Stick and cable, so had no interest in the products that Roku was trying to sell. Was having difficulty figuring out how to create an account without having to pay Roku for services we already owned. Called their customer support number and was told that I had to pay a $100 registration fee. Called the store where we bought the TV and was told that we did not have to pay to set up the TV; only to use the select channels. Called Roku again. First of all, could not understand a word this man was saying. When I told him that I just wanted the free service that came with the TV he tried to up-sell me. I repeat (three more times) that I just wanted the free service. He became rude. I told him that I wanted to speak with someone in the US. He told me I had to wait 3 hours and would receive a call back. I'd rather watch 24 hours a day of Barney videos than give these people a single dollar.

Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Sept. 8, 2017

Had my fire stick a few months now and now it asking for an activation code. Want to charge 80 to 100.00 to... saying my network is problem. They fix it for that amount. I already paid for my fire stick.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 8, 2017

Called Sling service number to help me get access to my Sling account. Thinking it was a Sling employee I thought it would be okay to let him fix the problem by giving control to my laptop. When he wanted to charge me to fix the problem I felt was being scammed. I asked to have control of my computer back and hung up. Legitimate or not, I'll never know. Dropping my account with Sling and in search for something safer.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 6, 2017

First off I have two Roku devices one tv one stick, I purchased another TCL tv from Walmart (Roku tv). When I got home I went to activate to no avail, so I looked up Roku website for activation. These people (foreigners) began to ask me e-mail address, password. All this crap. They say I cant activate my tv without paying a fee first (**) so I hung up. Do you know they called back twice telling me my tv won’t work without them activating it. This is their scam. # 813-642-7095. Hang up on them. Dont give no info. Go to roku.com. Register online. They do ask for a cc but not for activation fees just for movie purchases and channel upgrades. Needless to say my tv works fine. No activation fees from scamming Indian foreigners lying about being in USA. Make sure you use www.roku.com only!

Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Sept. 6, 2017

DON'T BUY THIS PRODUCT. IT IS A SCAM. We purchased our TCL 55" TV in September 2016. On August 30, 2017 a little round object size of a quarter showed up on the left bottom corner, as it turns out it is a light source leak. I went thru about 2 hours plus with representative to find this out, also often the sound will go out by itself and the only way the fix that is to unplug TV and plug it back in. The TV is still under warranty and their customer service department refuses to honor their warranty. They diagnosed this by me sending 3 pictures of the home page showing the round circle. They are saying that this problem MIGHT (and I stress might) be from us moving the TV around, we set up the TV in September 2016 and has not been moved since then.

So I wonder if I sent them a 3 pictures of me could they diagnose if I have any Health problems? We are senior citizens on fixed income and we bought this in good faith. We expect the companies to stand by their product. When a company will not STAND by their product it says they don't believe their product. We have 2 other TVs that are lasted over 3 years. Maybe they are selling disposal TVs that don't last thru their warranty. We will file our complaint with the BBB and anyone else who will listen.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 5, 2017

I recently bought a Roku Express. With a surprise $100.00 activation fee? I had a Roku stick before. Didn't charge me anything. I was happy with it but lost my remote. So I upgraded to Roku express but to my surprise now they are charging 100 dollars to activate. What a shame when you can get Amazon Fire stick free. OMW to return my Roku. Wish they would let consumers know beforehand.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 5, 2017

My parents bought me a Roku stick to use in my bedroom to stream Netflix and a couple other apps. I followed the instructions on the tv and when it came to putting in the code it came up invalid. I was given a message to contact their customer service. I then contacted the customer service line and was greeted by an angry Indian man who wanted me to get my laptop out and connect via that. I should have hung up then but I played along and got out my laptop. He then said my Network was compromised and he then transferred me to a Indian girl named Maria **.

It was an obvious fake name because she had a very thick Indian accent. She then remote logged into my computer and pulled up a black screen with encryption codes then wanted $250.00 to clean out my Network. By then I knew it was a scam and called her out on it. She then chewed me out and hung up. My laptop is now running very slow and I think some malware was put on it. To anyone out there reading this please be wary of this company. I will stick with my Smart Blu Ray player and PS4 to stream. Roku seems to be scamming customers.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 5, 2017

I have a Roku TV and two Premier boxes. I have cut the cable cord because of Roku. ROKU does NOT charge an activation fee or support fee at all. However, there are scammers out there with sites directing you to call to pay for activation. Anybody paying for Roku support has been scammed. Roku activation is done at the Roku site and there you can skip entering a credit card when creating an account. This option is not available via mobile activation. Most Roku TVs are not as fast as the boxes since they don't use quad core processors but the newer TVs still work fine.

Roku is not cable. It's at the mercy of your internet environment and the conditions of the server you are watching. Many free servers get overloaded or simply are not available anymore. Paid services often offer better stable connections but not always. This is not a Roku issue but between you and the services you are accessing. I use a 40mbps w/802.11ac download and have no problems streaming HD on two devices at once while using mobiles at the same time. A good router with 802.11ac is recommended. 802.11ac only works on the 5 GHz band so use that for Roku to get the speed. 2.4 GHz is slower and should only be used if the 5 GHz band signal is not strong enough.

The Rokus I use are IF remotes and don't have the drop off that some claim with the wifi remotes. Also they are 802.11ac speeds which are much faster than N speeds. The only down fall is that the boxes will keep streaming if the TV is off and you are watching live TV or a continuous play option. To stop this you must return to home screen where it'll go to sleep mode after awhile or unplug the Roku box. I have the box plugged into a smart power bar so when the TV is powered off it shuts power off to the box. (Make sure the smart power bar supports low power devices as many don't.)

I mostly watch Roku private channels that are not searchable on the Roku site. A Google search will find you many of these channels. So other than no sleep option on the Roku boxes I am quite pleased. These are computers that get directed to servers to watch. It is internet TV and most problems are the servers you are trying to access, poor wifi or your home internet. And again, I don't want to see people get scammed so if somebody says they represent Roku and want to charge you an activation fee or tech fee then walk away. They are NOT Roku representatives.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 2, 2017

I bought a Roku Express box and proceeded to set it up. The instructions and box states that it would automatically come on when it updates. This is not true. It instructed me to call the 1-800 number and pay a fee from $80 up to $200 to activate it which is not disclosed in the instructions or on the outside box. I called customer service and was hung up on five times. I will be returning this product back to Walmart for my money.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Aug. 31, 2017

I have never bought a TV that required an activation fee. I am very displeased that I have to return the TV that I have been saving my pennies for. I cannot afford the activation fee (69.95). I feel like Wal-Mart and TLC Roku have conspired to hold customers up in this extortion process. I am alarmed that Americans allow Big Business to operate at such a profound dishonest level, no one told me that my new TV was going to require an activation fee. I assume that is why the electronics department at Walmart is always so understaffed. So that Customers cannot ask questions. I also do not understand how electric and gas companies of New Mexico are charging 2.00 if you pay with a debit card. Car companies 5.00. What the heck... I am feeling fee-ed to death... THANK YOU.

Roku expert review by Jonathan Trout

Roku lets you have all of your video streaming services in one place. You have access to over 500,000 movies and TV episodes from free and paid channels. You can add streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, HBO Now, Crackle, Sling TV and more. Roku streaming players start at $30.

  • Roku Express: The Roku Express plugs into your TV’s HDMI slot and lets you stream content in 1080p HD over your wifi connection. You can download all of your video streaming service apps like Netflix and Hulu to your dashboard. Browse over 500,000 movies and shows that you can rent, buy, subscribe to or watch for free. The Roku Express costs $30.

  • Roku streaming stick: The Roku streaming stick is about the size of a USB stick and plugs into your TV’s HDMI slot. It has a quad-core process that makes navigation and streaming faster and smoother. It’s portable so you can move the stick to different TVs around your home or take it to your friend's house and pick up where you left off. Its compact design makes it great for wall-mounted TVs. The streaming stick costs $40.

  • Roku Premiere: Roku Premiere delivers fast and smooth 1080p HD streaming on all smart TVs. If you have a 4K Ultra HD TV, Premiere will stream content that is meant to be seen in ultra HD. Premiere includes a 4K spotlight that lets you search 4K-specific content. The Roku Premiere costs $70.

  • Roku TV: Roku TV integrates the Roku operating system into any Insignia, Sharp, Hitachi, Hisense and TCL TVs. You can easily switch between your cable box, gaming console and favorite streaming services so all of your entertainment is in one place. You buy any of the previously mentioned TVs at your local Wal Mart, Target, Best Buy, Sam's Club and more.

  • Mobile experience: The Roku mobile app turns your smartphone or tablet into a TV remote. The app is available on iOS and Android devices.

  • Best for: non-iOS users wanting a cheaper streaming device.

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Jonathan Trout

ConsumerAffairs Research Team

As a member of the ConsumerAffairs Research Team, Jonathan Trout believes having access to free, comprehensive information on products and businesses is vital to making smart purchasing decisions. He focuses his efforts on researching and reviewing multiple brands across a variety of industries, with the goal of writing unbiased buyers guides to help inform consumers on impending purchases.

Roku Company Information

Company Name:
Roku
Website:
www.roku.com