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Recently obtained a TCL Roku TV to replace a Samsung that failed. It's basically an LCD TV with a built in Roku interface. The interface seems good but lacks a lot of features and apps for the Canadian market. I would recommend it if it the Crave and CTV apps but they are completely missing. Found a thread on the Roku site requesting the Crave app but the request was met with quite a bit of indifference and hostility. That left me with very bad opinion of the Roku community and Roku in general.

Can't say I'd recommend the Chromecast either. Prime video is not supported and it appears that Amazon developers are going out of their way to prevent third party support on Chromecast. As Amazon and Google don't support each other's services I couldn't recommend devices from either company.

The only proprietary streaming device I would consider in Canada is the Apple TV. It appears to have the best support for Canadian services. The downside is that, like most Apple products, it is overpriced and designed to work best with Apple services and with services from Apple partners. That's OK if you have lots of money to spend on Apple hardware.

I'm mostly using HTPCs, as I have had for many years. HTPCs have issues. The interface is not great and the sound is not as good as it could be. Proprietary streaming services still refuse to provide support for the generic HTPC or open source software such as Kodi and legal support for Blu-Ray has almost disappeared. Browser interfaces are often buggy and difficult to use when compared to proprietary hardware. (It's still better than having no app.) Even though the entertainment industry refuses to directly support the HTPC, it continues to be the most versatile streaming device with almost universal support for streaming or other media sources and better longevity than the alternatives.
 

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Both Roku and Apple TV support Prime video now. For awile I thought it was just Roku. Prime video has been on the US version for so long it wouldn’t have taken much to put it on the Canadian version as well. Having both allows me to make a good comparison. I really love the interface of Roku ! I find that Roku is good for allowing me to play my Google Play movie and TV show purchases that I have been making for more then two years and playing my Cineplex store movie purchases without flaw. The stuff that earns you Scene points at the movies with Cineplex. When I tried to look for the same apps on Apple TV I couldn’t find them recently and just trying to air play it didn’t work out well at all. Roku is quite abit cheaper too.

That being the Apple TV is really good at getting things that are harder to get in a streaming box in Canada as @ExDilbert mentioned. Stuff like Global Go and Crave TV and a few other stuff not on Roku. They are quicker to get any newer stuff to market on their boxes as well. Roku takes quite abit of time sometimes, and at times too long in Canada to add new stuff. I have an iPhone 8 too so for me it just made sense to get one. It’s fun to Air play when I can as well !
 

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I've been doing some research when it comes to chromecast vs.. amazon fire stick vs. roku at it seems like Roku is the clear winner followed by amazon then chromecast.

But is this because of the picture quality or the interface?
 

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Beware of US reviews since they may omit Canadian issues such as lack of support for Canadian services.

The Chromecast has very good video and audio quality, especially with Netflix. The major disadvantage is the lack of a dedicated remote. The phone must be used. It tends to be very versatile due to the number of Android apps that support it.

The Roku has has a very easy to use interface. Last I heard it did not have a Crave app. The major disadvantage is lack of support for some streaming services.

I don't have any experience with the Amazon Fire Stick. Some people report overheating issues with some models.
 

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I don't have a Roku, so I can't say anything about it. However, I own both Chromecast and Firestick, and my favourite between these two has to be Amazon's Firestick. Just as ExDilbert mentioned, Chromecast's lack of a remote is a big disadvantage, and that was the main reason for me to buy a Firestick as well.

Picture quality wise, they are about the same in my opinion, and I can't really favour either one. I use them both, as they are hooked up to different TVs, but when I have to pause, rewind, or stop, for whatever reason, that's when I appreciate having a real remote with Firestick, rather than having to use my tablet to control it.
 

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Have both firesticks...the original and 4k. Video and audio is excellent. Still amazes me how signals arrive from hundreds of miles away through the air and wires and remain almost perfect.
 

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Just wanted to update this thread: Global TV announced in May that they were the first Canadian broadcaster to support Roku.

Some American-based streamers like Netflix support Roku in Canada, but no other Canadian-based services do. Crave's response this past week is they do not support Roku.
 

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I don't have Chromecast - I'm not even entirely familiar with how it works.

Having both Fire and Roku, I'd say that Roku is much, much better, more stable, easier to use, faster, etc.

The catch is, that Roku doesn't have Crave, CTV, Gem ... which is the only reason I fire up the Fire Stick at all. Roku has Netflix, Prime, BritBox, Global, DAZN, CBS All Access Canada, OneSoccer, (which Fire Stick doesn't have) ...

Crave keeps promising that Roku is coming, and presumably CTV would follow.

Some American-based streamers like Netflix support Roku in Canada, but no other Canadian-based services do.
Not entirely true ... OneSoccer was very early to Roku - and still doesn't support Fire. Casting works very easily from Android to Roku as well ... after I realised I could change my phone to 16:9, the picture frame fit as well!
 

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Are you doing screen mirroring with the Roku or direct casting from the streaming site such as with Chromecast? There is a difference in technology and quality between the two.
 

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Best buy Canada Sells Roku Tv streamers. Don't know why anybody will buy or sell roku in canada if it doesn't offer a lot of canadian apps/services/content.

Nfitz: The Dazn website says that it 'does' support fire stick

Many people are taking about the remote and interface when it comes to choosing roku+amazon over chromecast. Personally I don't care about remotes and interfaces, all I want is the device with the best picture....(FPS on Dazn). Someone already posted on another forum that the problem was probably on Dazn's end which i believe. But there are Dazn users who say everything works perfectly which makes me scratch my head.
 

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Don't know why anybody will buy or sell roku in canada if it doesn't offer a lot of canadian apps/services/content.
Because it supports most services, like Netflix and Prime, and you can cast anything else from your Android phone. I'm not sure anyone would use Amazon Fire, given how unstable and flakey it is - and I could never figure out how to cast anything to it either.

Nfitz: The Dazn website says that it 'does' support fire stick
I believe it does - I've seen the app listed. It was OneSoccer that doesn't ... that carries all the Canadian games - CSA made an exclusive deal with them. DAZN only carries foreign soccer. I subscribe to both.
 

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...you can cast anything else from your Android phone.
That may not always be true. It's possible for services to block casting with Android. Amazon Prime did this and may still. I found that out when I tried to cast Amazon Prime to Chromecast. They now support Chromecast directly so it's no longer an issue. As I mentioned earlier, screen mirroring is not as good as casting directly from a streaming site that supports it.
 

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I don't own a 4k tv, but if i bought a roku stick with 4k ability would i get a better picture than i would if i did buy a roku stick without 4k abiliites?
 

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For those who want the new 2019 version of Roku Express (Model 3930CA) it's now available in pre-order on Amazon and Best Buy. Best Buy says that the release date is 20 october and they will ship on the 22.
 
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