Is There Any Roku Internet Browser Available?
If you would like to use your streaming device as an internet browser, Roku sticks and set-top boxes are definitely not the simplest options.
Despite being around for several years (and despite several of Roku’s main competitors offering internet browsers on their own streaming devices), there are only two browsers within the Roku Channel Store. Neither of them developed by Roku itself.
The Best Roku Web Browser In The Channel Store
The two Roku web browsers that are available within the official Roku Channel Store are browser X and POPRISM browser.
The best Roku browser is browser X. We use the word “best” somewhat loosely. If you’re expecting a slick and modern interface, you are going to be disappointed. Browser X seems like it has been designed within the early 1990s; the fonts and therefore the interface is shockingly quaint.
That said, it does work—though it’ll struggle to render and format highly complex pages. There are some pre-saved favourites (such as Google News, CNN, and ABC News), but you’ll visit any site by entering the URL. You’ll also add your own frequently visited sites to your list of favourites.
To navigate an internet page, use the left and right buttons on your remote to cycle through the links on a page, and use the up and down arrows to scroll through the text.
On the downside, the browser cannot play videos (so stay beyond YouTube et al.), and it cannot fill in web forms, username fields, and password fields.
And another word of warning. During the research for this piece, I downloaded the app from the Mexican version of the Channel Store. It told me the worth was $0.00, on the other hand, generated a monthly invoice of $4.99 against my account. The US version of the shop does indeed list the worth at $4.99/month, so there’s a discrepancy between the various national stores. Confirm you are not caught out.
The only other Roku browser within the Channel Store is POPRISM browser. Frankly, it’s many levels worse than browser X.
Needless to mention, therefore, the browser is utterly useless for the overwhelming majority of web sites. It’s almost passable for text forums, RSS feeds, and other content that’s extremely text-heavy. Basic Google search results also are readable.
On the positive side, the POPRISM Roku browser didn’t attempt to scam me out of $4.99. you’ve to seem for the brilliant spots.
Use Screen Mirroring To Browse The Internet On Roku
As we’ve now established, it’s possible to put in a Roku browser, but the solutions available are faraway from ideal.
Therefore, the simplest approach is to use screen mirroring and cast a browser directly from your phone or computer on to your Roku device.
How To Cast A Web Browser To Roku From Windows
Besides the Roku internet browsers available within the channel store, the sole other option is to cast a browser from your phone or computer to your Roku using screen mirroring.
To cast a Windows browser to Roku, follow the step-by-step instructions below:
- Check your Roku is running a minimum of version 7.7 of the OS by heading to Settings > System > About. If it isn’t,
- Navigate to Settings > System > System Update > Check Now and let the method complete.
- On Windows, open the Action Center by clicking on the acceptable link within the lower right-hand corner of your screen.
- Click on the Connect tile. If you can’t see it immediately, you’ll get to click on Expand.
- Allow Windows to scan for your Roku. The method could take up to 30 seconds.
- Click on the Roku’s name within the list of devices. The connection will then occur automatically.
- Open your browser of choice and begin surfing.
To disable casting, select Stop Video on your TV screen or hit Disconnect on Windows.
How To Cast A Web Browser To Roku From Android
If you’d prefer to browse the internet on Roku from your Android phone or tablet, follow these instructions instead:
- Open your Android’s Settings app.
- Go to Connected Devices > Pair New Devices.
- Wait for Android to seek out your Roku streaming stick or set-top box.
- Tap on the name of your Roku and await the connection to initialize.
- Open the online browser you would like to use on your Roku.
(Note: Not all Android devices support Miracast. For more information, consult the manufacturer’s literature.)
Even Screen Mirroring Has Its Downsides
Unfortunately, even casting a browser to Roku has some disadvantages.
Firstly, Roku screen mirroring relies on Miracast technology. Meaning only Windows and Android devices can cast their screens natively. Neither iOS and macOS have support for Miracast, meaning you will need to use a third-party app to realize an equivalent result. The simplest third-party app to cast an iPhone or Mac screen to a Roku is arguably AirBeamTV.
HDMI could also be the quality of connecting media devices, but it’s tons of downsides. Here’s the way to use Miracast instead.
Secondly, Miracast isn’t a very reliable protocol. It’s susceptible to lagging, connection dropouts, failed pairings, and other issues.
Finally, screen mirroring means you would like to (a) leave the screen running on the casting device (which can quickly drain your battery), and (b) use the casting device to regulate the online browser.
Using the casting device to regulate the browser won’t be a problem if you’re watching a video. Except for active browsing, it’s hard to ascertain what benefits casting would have over simply using the most device—especially considering you’d got to check out the device’s screen to ascertain what you’re doing.
Despite the drawbacks, however, if you absolutely got to have a full-featured browser on your Roku device, screen mirroring is that the best choice.
Learn More About Using A Roku
Although support for Roku web browsers could be somewhat lacking, that does not mean that Roku devices aren’t still excellent devices to possess around your home.
To learn more about employing a Roku, inspect our articles explaining the way to get Google on your Roku and therefore the best free Roku channels to put in today.