Difference Between Roku TV And Smart TV

It seemed like only a few years ago when dumb TVs were all over the market, and smart TVs were the challengers. However, things have quickly changed, with smart TVs accounting for seven out of every ten televisions globally as of 2018. As time goes on, that number keeps increasing. 

Smart TVs get added functionality, similar to what you might see on a smartphone or computer, by having access to the internet, streaming services, apps, and even games. It’s easy to see why so many people love them.

Smart TVs run on different operating systems, like Android, Tizen, WebOS, and Fire OS. These are very well known, but one of the brands that have become a big household name is Roku, with over 56.4 million monthly users. In fact, in North America, they are the market leader, with over a third of the market. They are known for their streaming sticks and boxes, but they also make Roku TVs, which might confuse a few people.

What exactly is a Roku TV, and what makes it different from a smart TV? Of course, those are the likely questions on your lips, so as always, I’ll be here for you to provide the perfect answers to all the questions that you’re likely to have. 

So, what’s the difference between Roku TV and smart TV? Let’s get right into it!

Do you have a particular question about the difference between Roku TV and smart TV? Then use the table of contents below to jump to the most relevant section. And you can always go back by clicking on the black arrow in the right bottom corner of the page. Also, please note that some of the links in this article may be affiliate links. For more details, check the Disclosure section at the bottom of the page. 

What’s a Roku TV?

So then, what exactly is a Roku TV? The easiest way to define it is that a Roku TV is a type of smart TV that runs on the Roku TV OS. So, while a Roku TV is a smart TV, a smart TV is not necessarily a Roku TV.

Roku tare is just the manufacturer of the operating system. They do not produce the TVs themselves. Instead, they decided to partner with multiple TV manufacturers to put their software on their televisions. So, if you are looking for a TV with Roku on it, you can get one by purchasing one from TCL, Hisense, Sanyo, JVC, and many others.

What are smart TVs?

Before we can start pitting Roku vs. smart TV, we need to define exactly what a smart TV is. You can think of a smart TV as a television with internet connectivity at its base. This allows it to access a variety of services, including streaming services for both music and movies and being able to browse the internet.

A smart TV has the operating system built directly into it, which is one difference between the sticks and boxes offered by Roku vs. smart TV. The former is digital streaming devices that you can plug into any TV. However, Roku still offers Roku TVs with the software built straight in.

Smart TV manufacturers use different operating systems, including Roku OS, Fire TV OS, Tizen, and Android TV.

Can I get Roku on my smart TV?

So, let’s set an example. Maybe you were searching online and Googled “does Roku stream better than smart TV?” You’ve seen an article comparing the Roku TV vs. Android TV. Perhaps Roku comes out on top, but your TV at home is an Android TV!

Obviously, you don’t want to buy an entirely new television set. So, you ask if there’s a way to get Roku on your smart TV! The good thing is, you can! Roku and smart TV can work together.

Now then, the answer is using one of Roku’s streaming players. So whether you want a simple stick, a box to place under your TV, or even a soundbar running Roku, you can do that! Plug them into the HDMI port on your smart TV and switch to that input. That’s all!

What does Roku do for a smart TV?

Are you on the fence? You’re probably wondering what the purpose of Roku is on your smart TV. Well, it is pretty straightforward.

All you get with a regular dumb TV are your local channels or input from a cable box, a game console, and similar electronics.

When you have the Roku OS on your TV, you get so much more once connected to the internet. Do you want access to pretty much any streaming service? You can get Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Video, YouTube, HBO Max, etc.

You can even browse the internet as you would do on your computer! You can check your email, social media, and anything else. It’s awesome, really.

How are Roku TVs different from smart TVs?

What’s the difference between Roku and smart TV? First of all, there’s essentially no difference when it comes to the physical device. This is because Roku TVs are made by many manufacturers, and some of those manufacturers make TVs that run other OSes, like Android TV.

However, the software is the major aspect that differs. Therefore, consider the difference between Roku and smart TV software in the next section.

Which is better: Roku or Smart TV?

To start, Roku is one of the few smart TV brands that give you a variety of manufacturers to choose from. So, if you don’t like the products from one brand, you can go for another and still get the Roku OS.

When it comes to Roku and smart TV, the price point of Roku TVs tends to be lower than the competitors, so that’s another advantage that a buyer gets.

Roku is also an easy choice for beginners and those who don’t want the hassle of an overcomplicated interface. It honestly has one of the simplest UIs of any smart TV, and that is a big difference between Roku TV and Android TV.

However, one major difference between Roku TV and smart TV. For instance, is that if you want to get a TV from a bigger brand like Sony, LG, or Samsung, you won’t find any of their models running Roku OS.

How much do Roku smart TVs cost versus smart TVs?

A major advantage of Roku vs. smart TV is that Roku TVs tend to be available at a much cheaper price point than their competitors. But, of course, this applies to their streaming players too.

Perhaps the only other smart TV OS that compares to Roku in price is Android TV, but this depends on the manufacturer. TCL makes both Roku and smart TV running Android, and they are available at the exact same price point.

However, the prices go much higher when you look towards those from bigger manufacturers or running proprietary software like Tizen. It is essential to keep this in mind.

Credits: Thanks for the photo to Canva.

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