There are questions about Roku like “can you use Roku without internet” that needs detailed answers. Why? Though Roku isn’t new in the market, people may be familiar with other alternatives.
Roku is a digital media player that enables you to stream digital content on your TV via an HDMI connection. And excitingly, Netflix partnered with Roku Inc. to produce the first Roku device in 2008.
Roku’s entrance into the digital media player market has popularized the concept of budget-friendly digital media players with small form factors.
In addition, recent data indicate that over 55 million people in the US now actively use Roku digital media players, otherwise known as the Roku box. Many more may have keen interest but haven’t taken action because of the numerous questions on their minds.
One of such questions is the possibility of using Roku without an internet connection. Now let’s find the right answer to the question.
Can You Use Roku Without Internet?
Because your Roku device helps you to stream online content on your TV, it needs an internet connection to work. You will need to connect your Roku player to a Wi-Fi network or an Ethernet port to access online content.
In the absence of a direct internet connection for your Roku device, you may use the screen mirroring technique to enjoy Roku’s service.
Here, instead of connecting Roku to the internet, you can use your smartphone (via mobile internet) to access online content. To do this, link your mobile device to your Roku device and mirror the contents to your screen.
Depending on how you want to consume content, you can still use your Roku box without the internet. Continue reading to learn more.
How Can You Use Roku Without Internet?
In this case, your Roku device will act as an ordinary media player, using local or external storage to play content.
Some streaming services allow you the option to download content for offline usage. If your Roku device has sufficient memory, you can download the content you want to watch to its local or external storage and play on your TV.
However, some services only allow offline viewing for mobile devices. In this circumstance, you would have to mirror your smartphone screen to your Roku device and watch on your screen.
How can you mirror your smartphone screen to your Roku device? Continue reading for more information.
How To Mirror Smartphone Screen To Your Roku Device
Follow the steps below to use the screen mirroring feature.
- Go to Settings on your Roku home screen. > System > Screen mirroring.
- On your smartphone, find and tap on the screen mirroring feature. Pixel devices have an inbuilt Cast feature. Samsung phones have a SmartView functionality. Search for your phone’s native screen mirroring tool in the settings or check on Google.
- On your mirroring tool, tap on the Roku device.
- Accept the connection request on your Roku device to continue.
- Your Roku device will ask you whether you want to use RokuCast without the internet. Select ‘Proceed anyway.’
How Does Roku Work?
Your Roku device connects to your TV via an HDMI cable. You can then link your Roku device to the internet via a Wi-Fi network or an ethernet cable.
Your Roku device comes with many apps or channels that give you access to various digital content such as music, movies, television shows, and documentaries.
Your Roku does not save programs. Using Roku is akin to watching your favourite channels on cable television. However, Roku offers more flexibility as it allows you to choose what to watch and when.
So what channels are available on Roku? Continue reading to learn more.
Channels Available On Roku
During its launch in 2008, only Netflix was the only available channel on Roku. Netflix had partnered with Roku Inc. to produce the first Roku device.
However, as of today, Roku features over 3000 channels across a wide range of interests, from news to movies, music, and sports. There is something for everyone on Roku.
The Roku also has its dedicated app that provides access to free TV. Internet video streaming websites such as YouTube and Vimeo are also available on Roku.
Roku provides a Channel Store where users can install channels of their choice. Select Streaming Channels on your Roku home menu to go to the Channel Store to install a channel.
Go to Search Channels and type the name of your channel of interest. When displayed, select, and press OK. The TV channels will appear on your home screen afterwards.
Models Of Roku Devices
There are four Roku models currently available on the market.
The Roku Ultra:
This device was launched in 2020, featuring a powerful processor and more memory capacity than any other Roku model.
A complete package includes a Roku advanced remote, batteries, a power adapter, headphones, and a 3.0 USB cable. With the USB cable, you can play videos from an external drive.
The Roku Ultra has a remote finder feature. If you cannot find the remote there is a button for you to press on the device top that would make your Roku remote beep wherever it is.
The Roku Ultra remote is advanced and powerful. It has the following features.
- The remote has a rewind button that can playback the last 20 seconds of the current stream.
- It has volume and mute buttons, just in case you need to increase the sound or need absolute tranquillity without putting it off.
- It has a voice search button with a 90% success rate. If you do not want to type, press the voice search button and say what you’re looking for.
- It has a jack for headphones, just in case you need your privacy.
- It has two shortcut buttons that you can use in launching your videos.
- The remote has Bluetooth connectivity, audio, and other great packages.
This device was last updated in 2019. It is gradually becoming obsolete as it lacks so many modern features.
If you’re looking for a low-budget device with 4K UHD resolution and HDR, the Roku Premiere is an ideal option.
It lacks a lot in comparison with Roku Ultra:
- Roku Premiere has no voice search buttons.
- The remote can control the Roku device, but not the TV.
- It has no remote finder or shortcut buttons.
- It does not have Bluetooth features and does not support a headphone.
- It does not have support for Dolby Vision.
- It doesn’t also have an Ethernet or USB Port.
The Roku Premiere comes with a 1080 HD resolution, an HDMI port, DTS pass-through, Dolby Audio and a quad-core processor.
This model does not come with a lot of advanced features but is budget-friendly. If you want basic functionality, it will suffice.
Roku Express 4K+:
Roku launched this device on May 16th, 2021. It features 4K videos in HDR with HDR10+.
It comes with a remote with a voice search button and can control the Roku device and the TV set.
The Roku Express 4K+ does not have an Ethernet port. However, you can connect an Ethernet adapter to your power adapter.
Roku Streaming Stick Plus+:
This model was the most popular before the Roku Express 4K+. This model has a 4K HDR video and Dolby Atmos sound support.
The remote comes with features like voice search, volume and power control buttons. The remote can also control your TV functions.
There is also another variant of this model known as the Roku Streaming Stick + Headphone Edition.
In addition to the power and volume buttons, this edition has a different remote control with a mute button. It also has a headphone jack for added privacy.
Common Problems With Roku
- To stream videos, you must have a stable Internet connection.
- You cannot stream some of your favourite live TV without an additional subscription.
- Most high-quality channels require a monthly fee to access.
Advantages Of Roku
- Roku gives you access to multiple channels and content.
- You can choose from any of the four models.
- Roku offers flexibility as you can choose what you want to watch and when you want to watch it.
- Roku devices are not expensive.
- Roku devices come with a voice remote with 90% efficiency.
- It supports 4k video quality, depending on the model you choose.
The Roku Channel App
The Roku Channel App gives users free access to a wide range of content, including movies, sports and news. This channel is a Roku dedicated channel for video streaming.
The Roku app home screen displays all the available channels on Roku. You can use the app on your Android or iOS devices without logging in to your Roku account.
Roku players are available for as low as £29.99. Using the Roku app or device does not require any monthly subscription. You only pay to access content on other channels like Netflix and Sling.
How Roku TV Works
Roku TV offer users the opportunity to stream their entertainment of choice with ease. It transforms your home into a smarter and more connected home.
The Roku TV is a smarter television and has the Roku app installed in it. You can access a range of streaming services like Hulu, Netflix, Disney+, Apple TV etc, on the Roku TV (Thanks to the Roku App).
Another thing you need to know is that the Roku TV boasts several models designed by top TV makers around the globe. These include the likes of Hisense, TCL, SANYO, JVC, HITACHI, RCA, PHILIPS, etc.
Is It Possible For Roku To Use Phone Hotspot?
Technically speaking, yes Roku can make use of phone hotspot. The reason for this is simple. Your phone hotspot is like a Wi-Fi router. So you can connect your Roku to it with ease.
However, note that watching high-quality content or even any content for that matter will be costly. It will happen when you connect Roku to the internet this way.
Here is a quick advice for people interested in connecting Roku to internet via phone hotspot.
1: Ensure the data you’re using is charged from your mobile data. Note that your provider may start charging you directly if your data usage exceeds the limit.
2: You may incur additional charges to your phone bill if you decide to use Roku with your mobile internet as you would with a normal internet connection.
3: Don’t focus only on phone data usage when you connect Roku to your phone hotspot. Note that some providers usually charge hotspot usage separately. So it is best to check to ensure the bill you’re accruing isn’t on the high side.
If your provider charges hotspot separately, and you are eager to connect to phone hotspot, you can switch provider.
4: The final advice is that hotspot is a wise choice to connect Roku to the internet. However, you must be ready to manage your data usage. But if you can’t, you should opt for broadband
The question we addressed in this post is “can you use Roku without internet?” Here is a summary response to the question. If you’re going to use Roku without the internet, note that you can only watch a handful of content. If the Roku has internal storage or accepts SSD, you can watch the content stored on the SSD. However, you need internet to access channels on Roku.
Roku is a digital media player brand that enables you to stream digital content on your TV via an HDMI connection.
Your Roku device helps you to stream online content on your TV. So it needs an internet connection to work. You will need to connect your Roku player to Wi-Fi or an Ethernet port to access online content.
Without an internet connection, you can use your Roku device to play content on your TV from local or external storage.
You can also use the screen mirroring feature to view the content directly from your smartphone.