Roku vs Nexus Player

It’s obvious according to many posters that the Nexus Player is superior to the Roku for Tablo interaction. Since both run different variants of Linux, is it the specific version of Linux for streaming device support that makes one superior to the other?

Then on top of the OS, both platforms have their SDK and scripting languages. Once again, one of them may be superior to the other. How robust are the underlying libraries?

Roku was an outgrowth and spinoff from Netflix. Nexus Player from Google. My inclination is to trust Google for OS and development superiority over Roku\Netflix.

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Does Anthony Wood know that Roku was spun out of Netflix? :smile:

With that said, and Roku stands on its own btw… Anthony was behind ReplayTV before Roku.

The original Roku was a essentially a Netflix player… but the company was not spun out of Netflix.

The decision to spin-off Roku is undoubtedly more successful than Hastings’ plot to split up the streaming and DVD-by-mail services into separate businesses.”

Netflix Spinoff Roku Seeks Cash for 100-Channel Set-Top Service”

Jan. 27 (Bloomberg) – Roku Inc., the television set-top box maker spun off by Netflix Inc., is planning to raise $30 million in private funding this quarter and may sell shares to the public next year, Chief Executive Officer Anthony Wood said.

Now you do as well :smile:

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There are mixed stories… I’ll get the straight stuff from him directly. Looks like it’s possible that he left Roku for a time to work for Netflix before returning. We’ll see.

I stand corrected… indeed he did start Roku with the device he built initially at Netflix (and yes, I didn’t know that, but your statements about Roku and Netflix are wrong overall).

In my mind, each platform has some distinct advantages.


  • Largest selection of native apps
  • Largest amount of 4K content
  • Largest userbase (potentially get first attention from developers)
  • Voice search integrates the largest number of providers
  • Customizable UI

Android TV:

  • Faster and smoother interface with beautiful animations (better hardware)
  • Much better Tablo experience (even if playback improves on Roku it still won’t match feature set)
  • Google Cast allows for lots of content not yet available with native apps
  • Smarter voice search allowing for more natural yet specific queries and a much wider variety of queries not limited to TV shows and movies
  • Easier for developers to create and add native apps due to Android framework, growing quickly
  • Better gaming options
  • Lower price point for premium hardware

Personally, I prefer Android TV but I see why people might want to hang onto their Roku for some favorite apps not yet available on Android TV.

One drawback of them all is limited lifetime… I mean even if your keeps going… about year number 3, there’s some level of deprecation (usually). We live in a “cell phone” style world. My 48" 1080p LCD TV is circa 2008 and going strong.

I own sever Roku 3’s, but I have an older Roku (2) XD.

If there’s any good news, looks like the Roku 4 isn’t a step up in many ways… so maybe the Roku 3’s will stay for awhile longer.

Might be interesting to see who has the oldest frontend streamer that you can still purchase and it’s still worth having…

In some respects the Roku reminds me of the early days of application development for the PC. There were a lot of apps written for Windows in Visual Basic. They weren’t the most efficient but they flooded the market because VB was easy to use and could be used without an extensive programming background. Roku’s development environment and scripting language BrightScript remind me of the VB environment.

This is why I think that the Roku will always be technically inferior to Android devices in engineering terms though more extensive businesswise in terms of app building. Just as VB was technically inferior to C++ but superior in terms of business apps development.

This is what I believe lies behind the difficulties Tablo has had with Roku specifically but not Android devices.

I am part of that problem…I have no problem upgrading my streaming boxes every year or two…blame me :smile: