- No ad-free option
- Library feels random
- No offline downloads
- Limited control over video quality
Aside from the optional premium channels (whose prices vary depending on the channel), The Roku Channel Mod Apk v188.8.131.526717 is entirely free. You don’t even need to make an account to start viewing content. However, there is only one tier available: you must watch ads. Peacock provides a robust and worthwhile free tier, but customers can also pay $4.99 or $9.99 per month to get a better experience.
As you might expect, you can access The Roku Channel on anything with Roku’s name on it, including HDMI dongles, smart TVs, and Roku’s Android and iOS apps. You can even watch it through a browser or install it to your desktop. Non-Roku owners can view programming through Amazon Fire TV or select Samsung Smart TVs. However, unlike Tubi, there’s no Roku app for video game consoles.
The Roku Channel on the Web and Mobile
The Roku Channel Mod Apk v184.108.40.2066717 users will be familiar with the dark purple-and-black color scheme that dominates The Roku Channel. The website displays a big splash image for a featured program before listing other shows and movies in densely packed rows. The categories include whatever shows you’re already watching, as well as themed categories.
Browse new trending shows or shows that are just about to leave the service. Catch movies that aren’t on Netflix. Get a free taste of premium channels. Or let Roku recommend content it thinks you’ll enjoy. You can also directly search for content, and save it to your list. Selecting a movie gives you a synopsis, the rating and genre, and cast photos. Shows also include a list of every episode in a given season.
The video player itself is okay. You can skip back 15 seconds and turn on picture-in-picture. However, you can’t adjust video quality (or even see what a stream’s video quality). We understand free services not supporting 4K streams, but viewers should still know that information. The stream quality also depends on what you’re watching.
If a show isn’t in widescreen, it’s also probably not HD. Although playback was largely satisfactory over my home Wi-Fi connection (60Mbps download), some shows would struggle at first before smoothing themselves out and improving picture quality. This happened a lot with live TV streams.
The mobile experience is largely the same, except you can choose between vague “Auto, Low, Mid, and High” video quality options. The real perk for mobile users is that the Roku app also serves as a remote for any Roku device.
So, use your phone to control your TV, quickly type text searches, or issue voice commands. As a free service, Roku lets you simultaneously stream The Roku Channel to as many devices as you want without hitting a limit. However, you can’t download videos to your mobile device for offline viewing, something we appreciate about premium streaming services.
Accessibility and Parental Controls
Free services are especially tough for parents to police because there’s virtually no barrier to entry. Any kid with an internet connection can watch whatever they want without spending money or even making an account. That said, The Roku Channel has ratings for all its shows and movies, and lets you create a PIN number to restrict access to mature content if you have an account.
As for accessibility, you can turn English subtitles on or off. You can also adjust several subtitle display options, such as text color, font size, and window opacity.
The Roku Channel and VPN
It’s one thing to watch a streaming service without paying money, but what if you could watch a streaming service without exposing your private life online? A VPN is a vital tool for online digital security, because they spoof your location to another part of the world. However, they tend to clash with streaming services and their regional licensing deals.
I tested The Roku Channel with a Windows PC connected to ProtonVPN servers, and the results were disappointing (but expected). I could stream video while connected to VPN’s US-based servers, but I got locked out if I virtually went overseas. Oddly enough, live TV worked with the active VPN, but that might change in the future given how quickly streaming services move to block VPN traffic.
Rock On, Roku
If you already have a Roku device, you might as well see what The Roku Channel Mod Apk v220.127.116.116717 has to offer. After all, it’s free. You could find a classic sitcom from your childhood, an old hit movie you never caught in theaters, breaking news, or a hidden original gem rescued from Quibi.
That said, Editors’ Choice pick Peacock is a more appealing free service that lets you upgrade to an even better paid subscription. If you’re willing to pay from the start, Hulu and Netflix are also Editors’ Choice picks for general streaming audiences.
For more on streaming, check out five reasons why you may want to ditch your video subscription and keep cable. In addition, you should read how streaming has ushered in a new trash TV golden age.
The Roku Channel Mod Apk v18.104.22.1686717 won’t replace your favorite premium video streaming service, but it offers free, ad-supported classic movies, original shows, and live TV.