What Is the Roku Channel?

All about the streaming service's movie channel

Roku streaming sticks, boxes, and smart TVs provide over 5,000 third-party streaming channels. However, Roku provides and maintains its own streaming channel called The Roku Channel.

What the Roku Channel Offers

The Roku Channel combines select free, live, and premium subscription content within a single channel with an easy-to-use, Netflix-like onscreen menu. This makes it easier to browse, search, and watch specific content without switching between several apps to find something to watch.

The Roku Channel – Movies

An added bonus is you don't always need a Roku device to access it. In addition to Roku devices and the Roku Mobile App, the Roku Channel can be viewed on compatible web browsers and select Samsung TVs. 

Free content offerings are Ad-supported. Additionally, The Roku Channel does not provide content in 4K.

Here is what's included:

Free Movies

Chef Happy Feet Two
King Arthur Legend of the Sword Mrs Doubtfire
The Sandlot  Rango
Ghost Rider Pitch Perfect 3
Spiderman 3  

Free TV series

3rd Rock from the Sun  Bewitched
Forensic Files Hell's Kitchen
Rules of Engagement The Nanny
Drop Dead Diva Who's The Boss
Midsomer Murders  

Free movies and TV shows are not the most current and titles are cycled in and out periodically.

Free Live News and Commentary

ABC News Cheddar News
NewsMax TV Newsy
TMZ TYT (The Young Turks) Go
Complex Yahoo! News
People TV  

Free Entertainment Channels

FilmRise Classic TV FilmRise Crime
FilmRise Free Movies The Asylum Movie Channel

Free Reality Shows

AFV (America's Funniest Videos) FilmRise Cooking
Tastemade The Pet Collection

Free Sports Channels 

Adventure Sports Network Combat GO
EDGEsport Stadium

Premium Content (Requires Payment)

Acorn TV Cinemax
Curiosity Stream Epix
History Vault Lifetime Movie Club
Noggin Showtime
The Dove Channel The Great Courses (Signature Collection)
ConTV Starz
HBO The Urban Movie Channel
Monsters and Nightmares  

If you sign up for multiple premium services, you can pay for all of them via a single monthly bill with a Roku Account.

The Roku Channel – Premium Subscriptions

The Roku Channel's free, ad-supported content is available on Roku streaming sticks, boxes, and Roku TVs in the U.S. and Canada, web browsers, the Roku mobile app, and compatible Samsung TVs in the U.S. Premium Roku Channel content is only available in the U.S., and not available on Samsung Smart TVs.

Watch the Roku Channel on a Roku Device

The Roku device is the easiest way to watch The Roku Channel, and it's easy to add the channel on most Roku devices.

The Roku Channel is available on Roku streaming devices with model numbers 2450 and higher. If it isn't listed in the Featured Category or via search, it isn't supported on that Roku device. To verify a Roku device model number, go to Settings > System > About.

  1. Press the Home button on your Roku remote.

    Roku TV Remote — Home Button
  2. Select Streaming Channels in the onscreen menu to get to the Roku Channel Store.

    Roku Home Menu – Streaming Channels
  3. In the channel store, select Featured Channels and see if The Roku Channel is listed.

    Roku Home Menu – Featured Apps

    You can find The Roku Channel App in the Featured Channels category or by entering "The Roku Channel" in search channels.

  4. Highlight The Roku Channel so the app description appears on the right side of the screen, then select the right arrow to go to a more detailed description and add channel page.

    Roku Device Streaming Channels – The Roku Channel Found
  5. Select Add channel.

    Roku Device – Add The Roku Channel to Viewing Selection
  6. You can also add The Roku Channel to a Roku Device(s) using a PC or Laptop. Log into your Roku account, select Channel Store, find The Roku Channel via the Featured Category or Search, then select Add channel.

    Add The Roku Channel to Roku Device Streaming Selecction via a PC

    If more than one Roku device is linked to the same Roku account, The Roku Channel can be viewed on all compatible Roku devices sharing the same account once it's added.

Watch the Roku Channel on the Roku Mobile App

You can use the Roku Mobile App to add The Roku Channel to a Roku device or watch it on your smartphone.

  1. Open the Roku Mobile App on your smartphone.

  2. Tap Channel Store and in the Featured Category (or via search) find the Roku Channel.

  3. Tap Add

    Roku Mobile App – Adding The Roku Channel

Watch the Roku Channel on a Web Browser

Using a compatible OS and web browser on a smartphone, tablet, or PC, visit TheRokuChannel.com. This allows you to watch the Roku Channel without having to install an app.

Accessing The Roku Channel Using a Web Browser – Chrome Example

Compatible Operating Systems:

  • iOS 11.2.1+
  • Android 7.0+
  • Mac OS X
  • Windows

Compatible Web Browsers:

  • For iOS: Safari
  • For Android: Chrome
  • Cor Mac OS X: Chrome, Safari, Firefox
  • For Windows: Chrome, Firefox, Edge (except live content)

To watch free content on The Roku Channel using a web browser, Ad-Blockers must be off.

Before you can watch a movie or TV show using a browser, you need to sign in or create a free Roku account. If you have other compatible devices on the same account you can start watching The Roku Channel content on the web browser and continue watching it on those devices by opening The Roku Channel App. 

Watch The Roku Channel on a Compatible Samsung Smart TV

The Roku Channel is only available on Samsung Smart TVs using the Tizen Operating System (2015 to present). Additionally, while this version of The Roku Channel App provides access to free ad-supported content, premium subscription services are not included.

  1. If you have a Samsung account, select Apps in the Smart Hub.

    Add Apps to Samsung Smart TV – Step 1
  2. In the Apps menu screen, check to see if The Roku Channel App is available in the Video category.

    Samsung Smart TV Apps – Video – The Roku Channel
  3. The Roku Channel can also be found by first opening Search using the app search icon (magnifying glass) on the top right corner of the screen.

    Samsung Smart TV App Search Icon
  4. Then enter "The Roku Channel" using the onscreen keyboard.

    Samsung Smart TV App Search – Roku Channel Found
  5. Select The Roku Channel app, then select Install or Download.

    Samsung Smart TV Apps – Install Roku Channel App
  6. Once The Roku Channel app is installed, you can open it immediately or access it later from the My Apps screen or home page smart hub menu. 

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