Pros Has a beautiful interface with tremendous resources. Works extremely well with Plex and never buffers.
Cons There's an ongoing battle with YouTube. As of today, you can access YouTube via MyVideoBuzz and Plex. Hulu, the free version, is also not available. At one time you could access it via Plex but that capability has been taken away.
Summary I've reviewed and tried many other streaming devices and keep coming back to the Roku. The true test is whether or not my spouse and children will use it and the Roku is definitely the box they prefer. They really do need to have native YouTube and Hulu Free apps but there are so many other compelling reasons to own this box that it is still worth every penny. Buy it at Costco or Sam's and get a free HDMI cable and month of Hulu Plus. Note that the Roku 3 ONLY has HDMI output. If you have an older set, get one of the Roku 2 options.
Pros Breaks the back of insane cable TV subscriptions
Roku 3 + ethernet lightning fast
Cons No Youtube
Summary Earlier this year I purchased 2XS units for my smaller TV's, using the Samsung "Not-terribly-smart" hub on my theatre setup. Long story short, I bought the Roku 3 and gave up on Smart-Hub.
I dumped Verizon FIOS TV (saving $105/month) and upped my Internet speed to 75mbps. Firstly, this thing is lightning fast when connected via ethernet. I have had zero issues with both the XS & Roku 3 models. Subscribing to Netflix & Amazon Prime is all I need for content. I placed an attenna in my attic for local TV & sports.
I understand the YouTube issue to be a contractual one. However, this is not a deal-breaker for me. Eventually, that will work itself out.
With a 3-4 month payback, I'm already ahead of the game and the content line-up grows weekly. Personally, I see cable TV going the way of "long distance telephone service" within the next few years
...and that's a good thing.
Pros The amount of content. Amazon, Vudu, Hulu, Spotify, Netflix, Crackle etc.
The headphone jack on the remote is a brilliant feature!
Nice small box that feels nicely built, and I love the USB port for when I have the occasional need to view media files
Cons The box needs restarting every once in a while, and the FF and RW can become unresponsive in some apps.
Summary I have 3 in my house - one for each TV and it's pretty much the only way I watch (I also have a terrestrial antenna on my roof). I don't miss cable one bit, and the amount of entertainment available with this little box is astounding!
Pros Sleek design
Cons Very poor channel choice (Canada)
Had to reboot twice in one night
Summary I have a lot of streaming boxes that I purchased over the years, none of them is perfect but this one is by far the worst I had. I purchased the roku 3 last week at a big box retailer and I returned it two days later, thanks god for satisfaction return policies.
First thing I dislike, to setup the box properly, you need to go to their website to add channel to your account and set your preferences. A little annoying, but I can live with that.
Then I discovered that there were no YouTube channels, how can a streaming box be a streaming box without the most popular streaming website in the world? There is some way to add third party channel that have workaround to play YouTube, but this is not a convenient way to browse YouTube at all, it's missing important features and Mae it hard for nothing.
The choice of pay video service in Canada is very poor, Netflix is good for series but the movies are not the best in Canada,and no store on roku match the iTunes video store to rent movies.
On the first night the device hang once and reboot by itself another time. Each time requiring to stand up from the couch to reset the box, not a very fun way to sit back and enjoy movies.
I would put this device in last place from all the devices I have or had, the minix geo 5 android box is still by far my favourite, even if it's interface is not really for tv, followed by my old Boxee Box which is pretty slow to navigate and provide less than premium picture quality, but it work and offer tons of channels out of the box. In third place it's my Apple TV 3 , very good interface and movie rental choice, but bad remote and limited third party apps, in fourth place I would put my Sony google tv, which I tough was the worst experience ever, until I met the roku 3.
Don't waste your money on this cute little box, it does not do anything more than your smart tv already does, in fact it do less. Go on ebay and buy one of those cheaper minix 5 Box or wait a couple weeks for the minix 7.
Pros Headphone feature is awesome, super fast to connect, no lag.
Cons Price. I want to buy a third one!
Summary Read all the reviews, it might not be for you though I doubt it.
It's the best streaming media player on the market by far in my opinion.