Google TV vs Roku: Which Streaming Device Reigns Supreme?   

Yogesh Pant
Oct 27, 2023

As technology continuously impacts the entertainment industry, Televisions are no longer what they used to be; they have now become smart. Devices like Google TV and Roku TV have had a significant role in this transformation. In short, they are the perfect solution for enhancing your entertainment experience at home, at work, or even on the go. But how do you choose between Google TV vs Roku? Which is the best among them? 

We know how frustrating and time-consuming it is to choose when there are two options and both look best. However, there can only be one king. So, we have done the hard work for you and researched everything about these two gadgets. We have also read thousands of reviews from real users to get their feedback. 

To make it easier for you, we have provided a detailed Google TV vs Roku comparison based on various factors such as video quality, app availability, user interface, and price. So, let’s get started as this comparison is going to be very informative and interesting. 

Google TV vs Roku TV: A Brief Introduction of Both Streaming Devices

Before we start our comparison between Google TV vs Roku TV, it’s better to understand the basics of both as it will help you catch every point that makes a huge difference. 

What Is Google TV? 

Google TV is basically a user interface for Android TV, enhanced by Google’s artificial intelligence, Assistant, and Knowledge Graph. Launch in 2020, it's not here to replace Android TV. It is not even an operating system, but a software layer, running on Google’s full-fledged OS for set-top boxes, streaming devices, and smart TVs. It’s smarter and meant to improve the existing Android TV experience to make it more intuitive and helpful.

It supports many streaming apps, such as Netflix, Apple TV Plus, Hulu, and more. However, Google TV allows you to access the content you want to watch without opening the specific streaming app, as long as you are signed in to your Google account. 

Google TV also uses its smart algorithm to track the apps you have subscribed to and the movies and shows you like to watch. This enables the platform to suggest content that you might enjoy, which is displayed under a Home Screen section called “For You.”

Google TV also integrates its voice control features through Google Assistant. You can use this to search for your preferred TV shows, and songs on YouTube, change channels, and do much more by simply asking the assistant. Moreover, it offers over 10,000+ apps, including Disney+, YouTube Music, Spotify, etc.

What Is Roku?

Roku is a brand that makes smart TV OS, smart TVs, streaming devices, smart homes, and audio products. Meanwhile, Roku TV remains the company’s best product that gives you the freedom to customize your home screen. 

This TV runs on the Roku OS, which is easy to use and offers a lot of features. You can rearrange your favorite streaming channels, change the background images, and even create your own screensaver. You can also access over 350+ free live TV channels on The Roku Channel, which is a great bonus. 

Roku TV is very simple to set up. You just need to follow the instructions on the screen and you can connect your cable or stream Netflix in no time. You can also enjoy the high-quality resolution of most Roku streaming devices, which support 4K. 

Google TV vs Roku: Side-by-side Comparison 

Now that you have understood the basics of both Google TV and Roku, it's time to compare them to real-world use cases. While both seem to have similar functions, there are a lot of differences in terms of usage, functionalities, and user experience. 

Below is a side-by-side comparison between Google TV vs Roku to help you understand the key differences between these two best streaming options in the market right now. 


Google TV

Roku TV


Clean, and easy-to-navigate interface 

Straightforward and modern user interface

In-built Voice Control



Home Screen

You can personalize the home screen with “For You’ suggestions

You can personalize the home screen with your favorite channels

Video Quality

4K and HDR

HDR, 4K, and 8K

Audio Format

Dolby Atmos, Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus

Dolby Atmos, DTS Digital Surround, Dolby-encoded audio, Digital stereo


All major streaming services supported

All major streaming services supported

Live TV Channels



Mobile App



Google TV vs Roku TV: What’s the Major Difference? 

By far we know Google TV and Roku shares a lot of similar features, such as affordable price and high-quality video. However, there are also some important differences between them that you should know before you decide which one to choose. 

Here are some of the main differences between Google TV vs Roku:

User Interface

Talking about the user interface, Google TV is a win-win in this case. It has a more simple and easy interface that works seamlessly with Chromecast, Android TV, Apple TV, and other streaming devices and sticks. Additionally, you get access to 10K+ apps and channels. 

Similarly, Roku also has an intuitive and easy-to-navigate interface. It is so simple that you don’t even need a guide to understand its functions and functionalities. You have all your apps on the home screen, just click it and enjoy binge-watching your favorite movies, web series, TV shows, etc. 

So, in terms of user interface, Google TV is a clear winner of the Google TV vs Roku comparison. 

Home Screen

Google TV allows users to enjoy a personalized home screen that shows them various suggestions from Google and other apps like YouTube, Netflix, Prime, and more. This feature is very useful if you are often unsure about what to watch next.

Roku does not have this feature. Its home screen is very simple and organized. Some people might like the simplicity, but the recommendations are a great way to discover new content and save time.

Picture Quality

Beyond the other factors in choosing between Google TV vs Roku, it is worth discussing one of the most prominent concerns: the quality of the video output. 

Google TV and Roku have similar performance in this aspect, but there are some subtle differences that might matter to some users. One of them is related to a display technology called HLG, which stands for Hybrid Log-Gamma. HLG is a type of high dynamic range (HDR) format that enhances the contrast and color of the images on the screen. 

It is not as widely used as HDR10/10+, which is the most common HDR format in the market, but it has some advantages over it. HLG is more compatible with different types of displays and broadcast standards, and it can produce slightly better-looking images than HDR10/10+. 

Roku supports HLG, while Google TV does not. This might not be a big issue for most users, since HLG content is still rare and hard to find, but it could become more relevant in the future if HLG becomes more popular and widely adopted by content providers and device manufacturers.

Available Streaming Apps

The main USP of streaming platforms remains the availability of massive libraries of popular apps, including the most popular ones like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and more. These apps are the main attraction of both platforms, as well as some hidden gems that may not be as renowned.

Google TV has more than 10,000 streaming apps available, covering almost every genre and category you can think of. You can easily add new apps to your Google TV by going to the Apps tab and selecting/downloading the ones you want. 

However, Roku TV has a staggering number of close to 40,000 apps to choose from. Many of these are official Roku channels, but there are also tons of third-party apps that cater to specific preferences and interests. 

Google TV vs. Roku - Additional Features

There are some other features that you should be aware of besides the main ones that most people mention and compare. So, let’s talk about them - 

  • Google TV is accessible on your Chromecast, Smart TVs, and on your Android and iOS phones. 
  • You can turn your Google TV into a wall decoration. When it is not in use for a long time, you can display images from your gallery, Google Earth, artwork, etc. 
  • You can cast any TV show, movie, video, etc., from your smartphone to the TV. 
  • Manage your smart home devices and see them on the TV. 
  • Use your phone as a remote. 
  • Connect a camera and have a video call on the big screen.
  • Access to Google Play movies - free. 

On the other hand, Roku lets you enjoy various streaming services on Roku TV, Streaming Players, and even on smartphones. Some of the features that Roku offers are:

  • You can use your mobile app to cast photos and videos on your TV screen.
  • You can customize your TV background with different wallpapers and hidden screensavers.
  • You can get the latest software updates automatically.
  • You can access free content on the Roku Channel on any device.
  • You can get a smart TV powered by Roku OS.

Alternatives to Google TV and Roku

While over 70% of people tend to go with the top options available, there’s much more to the picture. Undoubtedly, Google TV and Roku offer the best and most advanced services, but there is no loss in looking for other options that may turn out to be even better than these two. 

Here are some Google TV alternative you should consider: 

Google Chromecast with Google TV (4K)

Chromecast with Google TV (4K) lets you enjoy 4K resolution with Dolby Vision and Atmos, which means you can watch your favorite shows and movies with stunning picture and sound quality. The remote is also very handy, as it can control not only the streamer but also your TV and sound system. 

The only downside is that the storage space is limited, so you might not be able to download too many apps or games. All in all, Chromecast is the best Google TV alternative. 

Nvidia Shield TV Pro (2019)

If you want a streaming box that can do it all, you should consider the Nvidia Shield TV Pro. This device is a beast when it comes to performance, and it can stream 4K HDR content, play games from GeForce Now and Steam Link, and support various audio and video standards. 

Nvidia also provides excellent support for the device, with frequent updates and features. The only drawback is that the device is pricey, and it only has 16GB of internal storage, which might not be enough for some users.

Onn Google TV 4K Streaming Box

Onn Google TV streamer may not be the most powerful device on the market, but it can handle most streaming tasks with ease. It is very affordable compared to other 4K streamers and has the Google TV interface, which is user-friendly and customizable. 

However, it does not support Dolby Vision HDR, which is a premium feature for enhancing picture quality. Still, the Onn Google TV streaming box is the best Roku TV alternative. 

Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K Max

Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K Max is the most powerful streaming device from Amazon, and it supports almost all audio and video formats. You can also use it with your Alexa smart speakers for voice control. 

The Fire TV OS runs smoothly and quickly on this device, but it also has some drawbacks. It is not a major improvement over the previous model, and the software can be messy.

Apple TV 4K (3rd Gen)

Apple TV 4K (3rd Gen) has a lot of power and storage, and it supports both Dolby Vision and HDR10+ formats. The software and app library are also excellent. However, it is not a cheap device, and it has some limitations. It does not work well with devices that are not from Apple, and it only has an Ethernet port on the 128GB model. You will also need to buy your own HDMI cable, as it is not included in the box.

Google TV vs Android TV: Key Differences

We know you might be thinking we are going out of the topic, but it's not actually. As a lot of people think Android TV and Google TV are the same, there are huge differences. 

Operating System

Google TV and Android TV are both based on the same platform: Android TV OS, first launched in June 2014. The only difference is that Google TV has the latest Android updates (currently 13/12), while Android TV runs on older versions.

User Interface and Appearance

Unlike Google TV, which is a specific brand, Android TV is a more generic platform. Different TV makers or dongle providers/set-top box services can have their own versions of the Android TV interface. They all look similar to an Android phone or tablet, with apps arranged on the screen. 

Google TV has a very different interface, as it is designed to be more personalized and tailored to your preferences. It focuses more on making it easy to find and stream content, rather than copying the usual “Android” look.

Apps and Features

Both Android TV and Google TV can support thousands of apps, depending on how much storage your TV has. You can find many Android TV apps already installed on your TV, or you can download more from Google Play (on your TV) just like you do on your Android phone or tablet. 

However, some apps that are not available in your country or region on Google Play will also be missing on your Android TV. Google TV boasts of having over 10K apps to choose from. You can enjoy streaming services like Plex, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, Kodi, music apps like Spotify, social media apps, and other entertainment apps.

User Profiles

Android TV and Google TV have a slight difference in how they set up their user profiles. Android TV works like an Android phone, while Google TV needs a new user account.


Android TV uses your Google Play user profile on the big screen. This is useful if you want to cast videos from your phone to the Android TV screen. You can add multiple Google accounts (Gmail-based) on an Android TV, and they will work with your phone-based Google Play accounts. 

Google TV has a different approach. You need to make a new user account for Google TV on your Android/iPhone for the first time. This is not related to Google Play, although you can use the same account for both.

Remote Control

To use Google TV or Android TV, you will need a remote control to navigate the interface. You have two options: you can either use the physical remote that comes with your Google Chromecast device or your TV manufacturer, or you can download a TV Remote app on your phone. The app is part of the Google TV package that you install on your device.

The best part is that you can use the Google TV remote with any Android TV model as well. All you have to do is connect your Android TV with your phone via Bluetooth.

Which Is Better: Google TV or Android TV?

Google TV is a newer and improved version of Android TV. It has more features, more compatibility, and better user experience. On the other hand, Android TV has a lower price because it runs on an older operating system. 

Both have their advantages and disadvantages, depending on what you need. So you should consider the factors mentioned above to make a smarter choice.

10 Best Free TV Streaming Sites 

As we know paying for Google TV or Roku services can be quite expensive for your pocket, there is no shortage of free options available on the internet. However, we can’t guarantee the credibility and reliability of such sites. Still, thousands of people around the world are using them, so why don’t you give them a try? 

Here’s a list of the 10 best free TV streaming sites that work in 2023: 

#1 SolarMovie 

You can watch your movie for free on this free online streaming site without signing up. It has a huge media library with both new and old movies. 

You can also find your favorite movie by country, genre, or year. The videos here have multiple servers and the best quality you can imagine. 

#2 AZMovies

 AZMovies is the place to go if you want to watch your movie in HD quality. It has a wide range of movies, from blockbuster hits to indie gems. You can watch as many movies as you want without any limit. 

You also get daily updates on movies so you can keep up with the latest trends. The only downside is that there are unskippable ads that pop up during your watch time. 

#3 123Movies 

123Movies is among of the best free movie streaming websites with an amazing collection of classic and modern movies. You can watch TV shows and movies here without signing up. 

It offers a great viewing experience. The site has a user-friendly interface and you can easily navigate to find your favorite movie. Their streaming is top-notch.

#4 Vumoo

Vumoo is one of the best sites for streaming your favorite movies, TV shows, and web series without sign-ups. It has a lot of TV shows and series that you can access easily. The site offers a smooth playback of content and it’s ideal for fast streaming needs. 

#5 Tubi 

You can watch movies on Tubi without signing up and you can also adjust your video quality. It has a great content catalog with minimal ads. You can also use the Tubi app on any platform. Tubi has some unique genres and a lot of movies, documentaries, and TV shows that you can watch on demand. 

#6 Watch Free 

Watch Free is a website that lets you watch movies without signing up. It has both new and old movies of original quality. It also has one of the best loading times compared to other websites. The videos are of high quality and the website has an impressive library. The only drawback is that the ads can be annoying.

#7 Peacock TV 

Although Peacock TV is a newcomer in the streaming market, it has a lot to offer. It has a wide range of movies, TV shows, and live channels from NBCUniversal and other sources. 

You can watch NBC News, NBC Proper, MSNBC, and more on Peacock TV. It also has a great library, a user-friendly interface, and a reasonable price. 

#8 Pluto TV 

Pluto TV is a free streaming service that lets you watch TV series and movies from popular networks like Nickelodeon, MTV, and Comedy Central. You don’t need to sign up or pay anything to enjoy Pluto TV. It also has minimal ads, which is rare for a free service. 

#9 Yes Movies 

Yes Movies is one of the best sites with a simple and clean interface that makes it easy to find the movie or show you want to watch. It also has a search tool that helps you filter by genre, country, year and quality. 

It has a huge collection of movies and shows from different countries and languages. It also shows you the ratings, reviews, and trailers of the movies and shows. The only downside is that it has some annoying ads, but otherwise, it’s a fantastic site to check out.


Popcornflix is a free streaming site that offers a variety of movies and TV shows for your entertainment. You can find movies from different genres like horror, comedy, documentaries, action, foreign films, and more. 

You can also browse by categories that help you find what you are looking for. You don’t need to create an account to use Popcornflix. It has fewer ads than other free sites and it has an impressive library of content.

Is Investing in Video Steaming App Development a Good Idea? 

Video streaming apps have become more popular and profitable than ever. According to a report by Grand View Research, the global video streaming market size is expected to reach $223.98 billion by 2028, growing at a compound annual growth rate of 21%1. 

The demand for video streaming apps is driven by factors such as the availability of high-speed internet, the proliferation of smart devices, the preference for on-demand and personalized content, and the emergence of new technologies such as 5G, artificial intelligence, and cloud computing.

Looking at the increasing prevalence of video streaming apps and lucrative figures, investing in video streaming app development can be a profitable business venture. However, you will need to partner with the best video-streaming app development company to ensure the success of your venture. 

In that case, you can trust Mtoag Technologies as we have extensive experience in developing video streaming apps for various platforms and industries. We can help you with every stage of your app development process, from planning and designing to developing and testing. 


When it comes to choosing the best streaming device or platform, you might find it hard to decide between Google TV and Roku. They both have the same video quality, the same voice control features, and a similar reliable overall user experience. They both also have access to thousands of apps and channels, including popular ones like Netflix, YouTube, Disney+, and Amazon Prime Video. So, how do you pick one over the other?

The answer depends on your personal choice and needs. Google TV has some advantages over Roku, such as a better interface, a more powerful search function, a built-in Chromecast, and integration with Google Assistant and other Google services. 

On the other hand, Roku has some benefits over Google TV, such as a wider app selection, a more neutral platform, a simpler remote control, and compatibility with Alexa and other smart devices.

Ultimately, there is no clear winner in the Google TV vs Roku comparison. They are both excellent streaming devices that offer a lot of value for your money. However, if you have to choose one, you should consider what features matter most to you and what ecosystem you are more comfortable with. Either way, you won’t regret your choice. 

The only piece of advice we want to give you is that no matter what you choose, don’t fall for illegal streaming box that promises free services. 


Which is Better Roku or Google TV?

The answer depends on your personal choices and needs. Google TV has some advantages over Roku, such as a better interface, a more powerful search function, a built-in Chromecast, and integration with Google Assistant and other Google services. 

Is Google TV a Monthly Subscription?

No, Google TV is not a monthly subscription. It is a smart TV interface that comes built-in to some TVs and streaming devices.

Is Google TV Free or Paid?

Google TV is free to use, but you may need to pay for some streaming services or apps that you access through it.

How much does Google TV Cost in India?

Google TV does not have a specific cost in India. It depends on the price of the TV or streaming device that has Google TV built-in.

Is Google TV a Good Option?

Google TV is a good option if you want to enjoy a personalized and convenient streaming experience. It has many features and benefits, such as curated recommendations, voice search, watchlist, live TV, and smart home integration.

What is Google TV Subscription Cost?

Google TV does not have a subscription cost. It is a smart TV interface that comes built-in to some TVs and streaming devices.

Is Netflix on Google TV?

Yes, Netflix is one of the many apps that you can access on Google TV. You can also watch Netflix content on the Movies & Shows tab of Google TV.

Is Netflix Free with Google TV?

No, Netflix is not free with Google TV. You need to have a Netflix subscription to watch Netflix content on Google TV.

Can I Use Google TV without Subscription?

Yes, you can use Google TV without a subscription. However, you may need to subscribe to some streaming services or apps that you access through it.

Is Google TV Completely Free?

Google TV is completely free to use, but you may need to pay for some streaming services or apps that you access through it.

What are the Disadvantages of Google TV?

Some possible disadvantages of Google TV are:

  • It may not be compatible with some older TVs or devices.
  • It may not have all the apps or channels that you want to watch.

Does Google have a Yearly Subscription?

No, Google does not have a yearly subscription to Google TV. It is a smart TV interface that comes built-in to some TVs and streaming devices.

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