Chromecast vs Roku – Which is better in 2019? [Honest Review]

by birtanpublished on August 28, 2020

Welcome back to the channel I'm Michael Bryan and in this video I'll be showing you the chromecast and the Roku so two very very different devices that both serve almost the same purpose so if you're looking to turn an old TV into a smart TV or a smart TV into a smarter TV

Or maybe a projector into a smart TV or maybe if you just have a meeting room and you want to have you know different laptops casting screens up there very seamlessly you might be interested in one of these two devices now in this

Video I'm gonna really break down the ins and the outs the pros and the cons I'm gonna show you the interfaces of both of them to help you decide which one is actually the best one for you so it's very intimidating to choose one of

These before you buy them because like I said they're very different products so before we get too far in this video I want to tell you guys that I am actually doing a giveaway I teamed up with the guys from reviews org and we are giving

Away several chromecast for free and all you have to do actually I'll tell you that later on in this video okay so some fundamental differences of these two devices so the chromecast is going to operate out of the Google home app now

You don't need a Google home you don't need a home a home Mini or a speaker or anything like that you literally just have to get the app in order to operate your chromecast now your chromecast it's essentially gonna be plugged into your

TV and you can just cast anything on there so you can go into like just your regular screen or you can go to YouTube or Hulu or whatever other app you have and click the little cast icon I mention it in every single one of my videos and

It just pops right up on your TV you can continue browsing on your phone you can have multiple phones multiple tablets multiple laptops all doing whatever they want and whenever they feel like casting something they can just click the little

Cast button it'll pop right up on the TV so really a cool way if you have a lot of people in a house and they all have like different controllers maybe you lose your controller all the time but you don't lose your phone it's really a

Cool device because it's so just different from all the other ones it's really innovative and its really unique now on the flip side a Roku is gonna be a little bit more traditional or you do have a remote now some of the newer ones

Have smart remotes where you can plug in headphones on the side you also have a little microphone on a lot of the newer one that you can talk to and have voice commands you can also use an app with

This the Roku app and you can connect it to smart devices smart homes but not quite as easily in my opinion as the chromecast can so another thing chromecast also comes in two different colors you can have

Chalk or you can have charcoal not that you're actually gonna see it I don't know why there's a difference I guess just to match the rest of your home if you have Google home speakers or anything like that but if it's behind

Your TV why do you care what color it is so another important thing to note with the chromecast of course is the compatibility with Google home so right here I have a Google home Mini and if I just say hey Google play Spotify on lyra

TV alright that actually was talking for my other Google home Mini but you get the idea now at first glance when you're looking at the Roku you will notice on the back where you have there is essentially a reset button if you want

To reach in with like a pen or a screwdriver or something to reset it you have a micro USB power supply right there you have HDMI if you're gonna connect it to most modern TVs that's what you're gonna be doing but on the

Off chance that you have a really old TV maybe it doesn't have HDMI and maybe you don't have an adapter then you do have the option to use this cable right here which is essentially on one end going to be like an auxiliary cord and on the

Other end you have your RCA connection on the bottom of the Roku you'll see there's a little pattern right there where you can put this little sticker on there and you can stick this to the top or the bottom of your TV so that you

Don't have to worry about hiding it behind your TV because one thing to note here is that this does actually communicate with infrared so I our communication is sort of like what you typically see on a lot of older TVs

Where you have to point it right at it and you can't have any obstructions or else it doesn't work so on the chromecast what you see is much fewer ports on this you only have the power supply port you have a little LED right

There and then you also have a button now built on to this you're gonna have this little link we need looking thing where it leads out to your HDMI so you can plug it into any TV of any different angle and it'll just hang right on the

Back of your TV so both the Roku and the chromecast can run thousands of different apps but as you can imagine because there's such different ecosystems it makes sense that some apps might integrate more cleanly

With one as opposed to the other so to help us decide which one pairs best with which device if you want to call this like wine pairing between devices and apps that's exactly what we're gonna do here and to help us do this I have my

Friend Craig from reviews ordered let's see what Craig has to say about these two different devices and which apps work best thanks Mike well first I'm gonna talk about the chromecast now think about the chromecast is it has

Just about every app out there except for Amazon those dang companies are feuding all the time so no Amazon app on there but the best one and this is kind of obvious would be the YouTube TV app if you're looking for live TV streaming

It's all about YouTube TV because essentially it's all owned by Google and so they play really really nicely together you're gonna get a minimum of crashes you know that the interface works really quickly now on the Roku

Side of things my pick for Roku is Hulu Live or Hulu with live TV if we want to do the official name of it but anyway the reason I picked this one is because Roku's best feature is the search feature so if you search something on

Roku it'll comb through all of your apps and all of your potential apps honestly to tell you where a certain TV show or movie is streaming and it'll order it by price so Hulu live is fantastic for a

Lot of reasons but one of the reasons that I like it so much is that it comes with Hulu the roku search feature and the hulu live app gives you not only live TV but that entire on-demand library which is going to show up in

That roku search feature it's a delightful pairing i can't recommend it highly enough that's the one I would go with okay so the next thing I want to show you guys is actually the interface on both the chromecast and the Roku so

What we want to do is go into the Google home app and the first thing that's really cool is you're gonna notice that you're gonna be able to customize the ambient as they call it just the ambient whatever the slideshow is it's gonna be

Your screen saver so if you go down to personalize ambient you can go and change you know ambient mode can be like whatever pictures you want it can be a featured gallery you can say how about

Earthen space we're just gonna set it as that and then for the future it's gonna show up on the TV and those are going to be you know just ambient slideshow there you can also choose your own pictures if you go to google photos it's a great way

To have like a family picture slideshow going up there on the TV all the time if that's what you're interested in if you go into YouTube and let's say I want to watch my video right here all you have to do is you know so not at the very end

But you click the little casting icon right there at the top and then you want to cast it to whatever this TV's title is and then right there you'll see it'll pop up it's going to it's gonna start playing right there and

Then unless you say we want to watch another video we can add it to the queue or we can play it right now so that means as soon as this video is over its gonna start playing the next one now this also works very easily with a lot

Of other apps so Spotify for example you can cast right to that if you have like a stereo speaker on your TV you can go down and cast it right to later a TV that's what I called this one or lyra TV I'm not sure how you pronounce that

Actually and it's gonna start playing Spotify right through your TV so once we opt back into the Google home app another really cool thing I want to show you again we're just going from a phone right now is when you go over to the

Little personal icon right there so your account and you go down you can actually mirror your device so if this is your phone or your tablet or whatever it is you can go down and mirror it too later a TV and it'll cast and it's gonna show

Exactly what your phone is showing which is really cool so you can literally watch anything that it's on your phone now right here it's an upright view I don't recommend this but if you're using Google Chrome on a laptop it's much

Easier to integrate the two so on a laptop here what I really want to show you I'm gonna try to split the screens here somehow but essentially what you're able to do is you can either cast whatever is here so you can go and play

On TV just from YouTube right there and you can cast it on anything that's on the same Wi-Fi network as you or it what's even cooler is maybe if you're watching something that doesn't have casting capabilities but does have a web

Player you can go up to your settings on Google Chrome and go to cast and you can cast your entire screen right here to literate TV and that's gonna show you whatever you're watching so you can literally watch anything that is on the

Internet so now let's take a look over at the Roku interface now as you can see it's very different from the chromecast interface in a lot of different ways so first of all you're gonna have a menu option based on the left where you can

Go to you know home featured free stuff and I'll go down the rest in a second but starting with home you see all the apps on the right now the apps for Roku are actually saved on the Roku device rather than on your phone or your laptop

Like you might have seen with the chromecast now when you're using a Roku it's really easy you just go over and choose whatever app you want so if we just want whoo right now you know you have to sign it initially but it's gonna

Just show you the native app within the Hulu interface right here within their ecosystem and it's so easy to navigate with the remote that they give you there's also the quick little options on the bottom for what they think are the

Foremost used apps out there so Hulu and Netflix are two of them for example and so if I'm in Netflix or in a home page whatever and I hit the Hulu button it'll bring me right into the who app you know

Instantly without going home and then all the other stuff and settings is going to be basically you know you have a lot of customization in here you can change it for different TVs and make sure that has the right captions and the

Right settings for your TV to make it as easy to read as possible easy to watch just a great viewer experience you can also go down and change through the theme or the screensaver both are very easy just go and choose you know from

Dozens of different screen savers and themes out there so for example the screen saver comes with is like this Godzilla scene that suggests different movies and shows I added a weather one if you want to see like the time and the

Weather around you and then of course my theme is gonna be the earth space or whatever I chose right here and it's just gonna be your background basically nothing too exciting but you know it's very easy to customize and change that

So over on the Roku app on my phone you'll see that once you sign in not just anyone can do this but once you sign in to your account for the Roku device on your phone you can actually go and cast or whatever that they have on

What's on right now so a bunch of different suggestions you can go over to channels and it basically mirrors whatever the ten apps you have or however many apps you have on your Roku it shows them over here I just have ten

Right now there's also the channel store so it is a little easier on here to search for different apps that you might want as opposed to searching on the device with just a little simple remote then you can also go down and there is a

Remote on here so you can use remote mode and it's going to have on the bottom right there you have you know the keyboard like I mentioned so if you're trying to search on Roku and you want to search a little more quickly by opening

Up your keyboard and typing way faster on a phone in my opinion then using the remote control on the Roku and then on the bottom right of this you'll see there's a little headphone right there so private listening in my opinion is

Really cool so if you're watching TV so if you're watching a movie or a show or whatever and you don't want to distract anyone in your family or whoever's around you you can just plug in headphones on your phone or use wireless

Bluetooth earbuds and watch whatever is on TV and then listen through your phone so really a cool way you can do that and in my opinion that's really really nice about having this on the phone so you don't need to upgrade to the highest

Version or the highest most expensive version of the of the remote so that giveaway I mentioned before we're giving away a bunch of chromecast for free literally does not cost you anything to sign up I'm not gonna be

Spamming you with emails or anything like that they're just three simple little steps they're totally free the first one is to subscribe to my channel hopefully already did that but honestly if you didn't don't even worry about

That I'm not gonna make anybody subscribe to my channel to win this the second thing you have to do is you do have to actually go down and comment so that we know who is looking for this so go down and comment just whatever you

Want and then the third thing is to go over and subscribe to reviews or if you definitely have to do that because once you get either one of these if you buy a Roku if you buy a chromecast or if you win the chromecast you're gonna want to

Watch their videos to find out you know what you want to subscribe to what kind of streaming services do you want and they you know they got you covered with that they have so many different reviews it's a great channel they're really

Great to work with I met all the guys over there and you definitely want to go and subscribe to their Channel so three steps subscribe to me comment subscribe to them that easy and it will contact you when you

Win so which one is actually the best option for you well I broke it down into a few different categories of different styles of people so if you're somebody who liked your old TV you liked your cable and maybe it was just too

Expensive and you're looking for something to replace that so you have the same style you have a remote you have a connected your TV nothing really changes except the interface on your TV a Roku is the obvious choice for you now

If you're somebody who's looking to do a little bit more of different stuff so maybe you're trying to get away from watching you know traditional cable maybe you're sick of commercials maybe you're sick of you know all the basic

Shows they have on and maybe you want to watch movies on your own time maybe you want to watch YouTube videos then it definitely makes sense to get a Google chromecast because you'll be able to use your phone you can type faster on your

Phone of course you deal with Roku as well but it's just easier to queue up different YouTube videos and just use your phone for a lot of the YouTube style stuff if you're somebody that wants to leave your TV on all the time

And have a slideshow of your family pictures or you know maybe some nature pictures whatever pictures you want if you want like just a nice slideshow on your TV get a chromecast adjust that like I showed you in this video it's

Really easy to do and it'll look great on your TV if instead you're somebody that wants to use your TV a lot during like party so if you have people coming over to your house and you want to be playing you know music on your TV or

Whatever your sound system is connected to your TV it makes sense in my opinion to get the chromecast so that you can you know listen to Spotify for example and you can use the native app in your phone

And you know skip through songs and use everything very naturally to queue up whatever is next now lastly if you're looking to run meetings and host meetings and you want people to share their screens again chromecast is the

Way to go so basically I named a whole bunch of very specific situations where you want a chromecast where it definitely is the better option but for the vast majority of people that are just looking to make their TV a smart TV

And sort of replace or you know cut the cable and have a different way of watching you know the news or watching movies and TV shows a Roku is a very obvious choice there so comparing the different Roku products all you have to

Do is go over to Roku comm slash products slash compare and essentially what you can do is you can click any different devices you want so if we want to compare the Roku Express plus to the Roku premiere to the Roku ultra it'll

Essentially just show you down below which one you're most interested in so which category do you fit in let me know in the comments down below if you are on Team Roku or on Team chromecast I want to hear from you guys which one you like

Best as well as what features you liked about that one that make you choose that one over the other so that's all I have for you guys in this video thank you all for watching I'll see you next time thanks for watching guys if you enjoyed

This video please be sure to click that subscribe button right there if you want to see another video just like this one click right there and for my most recent upload click right up there you got three great options guys click

On any one of those and I'll see you in the next video

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