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Roku Ultra: Price, features and content
As the top-of-the-line media player from Roku’s line-up of streaming devices, the Roku Ultra offers powerful streaming performance in HD, 4K and HDR.
The Roku Ultra is the ultimate and most feature-packed digital media player from Roku, Inc. With its powerful quad-core processor and outstanding connectivity performance, the Roku Ultra is a great match for entertainment lovers. You will get clear and immersive picture quality that is optimised for your TV whether you’re streaming in HD, 4K or HDR.
The Roku Ultra provides you with a complete connectivity solution. You can enjoy crisp details and rich colours of your favourite movies and TV shows with its dual-band wireless connection. If you opt for wired streaming, there is also an Ethernet port ready to serve the same purpose.
Unlike Google’s Chromecast Ultra, the Roku Ultra is a flat, disc-shaped streaming box that comes with a voice remote and a pair of premium JBL headphones. Roku claims its ecosystem offers more apps and better search, as well as more customisation than any other. Read on to find out exactly what the Roku Ultra has to offer.
Design and features
The Roku Ultra comes in a sleek all-black design that fits right at home on any TV stand or entertainment centre. This streaming device is equipped with a voice remote with TV power and volume buttons, and a headphone jack for private listening. The included premium JBL headphones allow you to pump up the volume without disturbing anyone.
For the right volume at night, there is the night listening mode. Enable it to automatically lower louder moments and boost quieter ones. In case you lose your remote, there is also a “lost remote finder” feature. Press the small button on the top of the player and your remote will play a sound.
You can find a number of essential ports around the edge of this simple but quite sophisticated device. There is an Ethernet port for wired streaming, an HDMI 2.0a port for video out, a MicroSD card slot to add extra memory for more apps and a power connector. There’s also a USB 2.0 port that allows you to have additional storage for your own movies, music and photos.
Lastly, there is the Roku mobile app that turns your iOS or Android device into the ultimate streaming companion. You can download it from the App Store or Google Play Store for free. With this dedicated app, you can control your Roku Ultra, search with your keyboard and enjoy a number of features including:
- The Roku Channel. Stream hundreds of blockbuster movies, TV shows and more anytime and anywhere.
- Voice search. Use your voice to search by title, actor or director across more than 1,000 channels.
- Private listening. Use headphones to pump up the volume without disturbing the house.
- Cast to TV. View your photos, videos and music up on the big screen.
Price and packages
At the time of writing (August 2019), the Roku Ultra is not officially available in Singapore yet. However, if you decide to get one, you might be able to find its imported US version through local retailers in major electronic centres like Sim Lim Square, or online stores like lazada.sg.
The price varies, but you can get it for around S$185. Some sellers may apply serious price cuts or add bonuses to the package. Before you buy, make sure you check the complete list of what is included in the box as well as what kind of warranty that comes with it.
What device is the Roku Ultra compatible with?
The Roku Ultra works with any television with an HDMI connection. However, to stream movies and TV shows in 4K or 4K HDR, you will also need a television that supports 4K or 4K HDR and a Premium High Speed HDMI cable.
Top picks for the Roku Ultra
The Roku Ultra offers an incredibly rich app ecosystem that allows you to have access to more than 500,000 movies and TV episodes. However, since Roku is not officially supporting its streaming devices in Singapore yet, most of the apps available for the device are geographically locked to the US. As a result, you will need a workaround, such as using a VPN solution, to enjoy all the channels available.
The most popular streaming channels include:
The most popular TV shows include:
Pros and Cons of Roku Ultra
Here are a few things you can expect from Roku Ultra:
- Great for living rooms, primary TVs and home theatres.
- Private listening from your remote or mobile device, with headphones.
- Mobile app that lets you use your iOS or Android phone as a remote.
- Voice search feature to explore titles by voice, using the remote or mobile app.
- Additional MicroSD card slot and USB port for extra storage.
- Compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant voice-enabled devices.
- Some region-based streaming services may not work due to geoblocking.
- You still have to pay to subscribe to some channels.
- To stream Roku on multiple TVs at the same time, you need a Roku device for each TV.
If you have a 4K or HDR TV and are looking for a way to optimise your streaming experience, the Roku Ultra could be the ideal solution. For around S$185, this fully-loaded streaming box has more than you need. The Roku Ultra comes with a voice remote with TV power and volume buttons, and a headphone jack, into which you can plug the included premium JBL headphones for private listening. You can also download the Roku mobile app on your phone and enjoy many extra features with your iOS or Android. The price tag along with all of the advanced technology and features make the Roku Ultra worth considering.
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