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Which 4K streamer should you get, Amazon or Roku?


Amazon's best value

Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K

Simple setup

Roku Premiere

When comparing the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K vs. the Roku Premiere, your choice might just down to your allegiance to Amazon's broader ecosystem of products and services because they both offer a ton of great content to stream with user-friendly interfaces. Both can deliver 4K HDR quality where available, while the Fire TV Stick offers a remote with built-in voice controls. Both offer support for Alexa — but only the Roku is compatible with Google Assistant for searching for and playing content.

Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K vs. Roku Premiere: Let's break it down

Roku Premiere

Roku PremiereSource: Android Central

The first thing you'll notice is that there are some distinct differences in design between the two. The Fire TV Stick 4K

is a compact dongle that plugs right into the back of your TV, with an included HDMI extender cable if space is pretty tight. The Roku Premiere is similarly compact and includes an HDMI for connecting to your TV, but it's light enough to be mounted to the back of your TV.

Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K Roku Premiere
Dimensions 4.7 x 1.6 x 0.5 in 3.3 x 1.4 x 1 in
Supports 4K Yes Yes
Supports HDR Yes Yes
Remote with microphone Yes No
Works with Alexa Yes Yes
Works with Google Assistant No Yes

On the software side of things, you're bound for a similar experience no matter which device you choose. Both devices let you customize your home screen with your favorite content sources, and the interfaces are intuitive and familiar if you've ever used a streaming service before. Amazon does a predictably good job pointing you towards its own video streaming and Alexa's built-in functionality on the remote. Of course, if you want, you can also control your TV through Amazon's minimalistic Fire TV app. You'll be able to find the most popular streaming services on Fire TV, including YouTube and Apple TV+. Who would have thought that when this product came out?

Roku has no direct stake in the streaming service game and isn't competing so head-to-head with Google, so there's a ton of streaming services and channels under the Roku umbrella. Each service gets equal weight on the Roku platform, but the remote does prominently feature hotkey buttons for Netflix, Sling, Hulu, and DirecTV Now, so that's a convenient inclusion if you're a subscriber to any of those services. And while there is no microphone on the remote, you can control your TV with the Roku app. From here, you can control everything from your phone, plug in headphones for private viewing sessions, and use a mobile keyboard when you're searching for content to watch. You can also conveniently cast content from your phone to your Roku-connected TV, which might come in handy the next time you're able to have a party.

Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K vs. Roku Premiere: Which should you choose?

Fire TV Stick 4k

Fire TV Stick 4kSource: Android Central

These two streamers are pretty evenly matched in all the areas that matter. Still, we must pick a winner, and ultimately we feel that the Alexa Voice Remote and slicker interface weigh in Amazon's favor. However, if you're not heavily invested in Amazon's ecosystem, or if you want access to Google Play apps, then the Roku Premiere might be the better option for you. Either way, you're going to be entertained!


Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K

Amazon's Fire TV Stick 4K offers a quick and simple upgrade to most any TV in your home.

Powered by Fire TV OS with Alexa available at your beck and call, the Fire TV Stick 4K is your best streaming option from Amazon. It's a full-featured dongle with support for HDR 4K and Dolby Vision that can also be controlled by your Amazon Echo speakers. Available for just $50, what's not to love?

Best Value

Roku Premiere

Roku offers the best streaming content, all contained in a compact package.

Roku managed to undercut Amazon in price but comes up a bit short in terms of features. Having said that, Roku devices are both easy to set up and use, and there's a ton of great content channels available. If you're not already bought into the Amazon Echo ecosystem, it's a pretty great option.

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