Difference Between Chromecast vs Roku: Which Streaming Device is Better?

The last few years have witnessed a huge rise in the popularity of streaming services and streaming sticks. Earlier, you could only stream on tablets and computers, but with pocket-friendly and amazing internet offers like Cox internet deals, it is now possible to enjoy streaming on multiple devices and also switch between them without missing a beat.

There is a great variety of streaming devices available in the market, Roku and Chromecast being among the most popular ones. The two have consistently added features and software updates to improve their functionality.

Both are convenient and reliable devices that achieve the same goal (stream entertainment directly to a TV) but in different ways. To decide which of these two streaming devices is best for you, you first need to identify your needs and preferences. To make the decision easy for you, have a look at the differences between Chromecast and Roku.

1#. Set-up Process

Both Chromecast and Roku have a rather simple setup process. For Chromecast, you just need to plug the device into the HDMI port of your television and log in to your Google account from the app Google Home.

Then, connect your device with the Wi-Fi at your home, log into your account in the streaming service provider’s app and select whatever you wish to watch.

For Roku, you first have to make an account with Roku; you also need to provide your credit card number for that (you can remove it later). Then simply log in to your account of the streaming service and choose what you want to access.

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2#. Controls

The Roku comes with a remote which has all the buttons you need to control the streaming. These include the pause and play buttons as well as some dedicated buttons for different channels.

Also, if you choose to buy a high-end expensive model of Roku, it even has a voice search button. Besides the remote control, the Roku device can also be controlled with its mobile app.

The Chromecast on the other hand can only be controlled with a mobile, tablet and Google Home app. It does not have a traditional remote. So in case you need to navigate to a channel on the screen, you first need to open the app on your cell phone and then cast it to the Chromecast.

This could be a drain on the battery of your mobile device. Hence, Roku is more convenient in terms of the control options it provides the user.

3#. Content

Both Roku and Chromecast offer Netflix, YouTube, ESPN, HBO, Amazon Prime Video and major news networks as well as sports broadcasters. However, Roku has a more agnostic approach towards providers so there aren’t any issues like Amazon vs Google.

It also has a broader swathe of content as it covers everything from free channels like NBC and ABC to premium cable steamers like HBO.

Overall, there are over 8,000 channels and apps available on Roku. Chromecast has more than 2,600 Chromecast-enabled apps which provide content from a range of entertainment sources.

4#. Voice Control Capabilities

Chromecast is a Google device and hence capable of taking voice instructions through Google Assistant or a correctly set-up Google Home unit. All you need to say is “Play the song Material Girl” and it will play it for you on the screen without you having to move a finger. Roku does not have built-in voice capability.

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Its enhanced functions have some voice search capability but for that to be effective the channel must have the capability programmed into it. So far, the only one that has this programmed is Roku’s own The Roku Channel.


Both Chromecast and Roku are excellent devices for streaming entertainment. Now that you are well aware of their pros and cons, you can make a good decision for yourself.

If you want a good variety of content to browse and watch and also prefer having a remote in hand, Roku is the answer. But if you don’t mind using your mobile or tablet to cast content onto the screen, you could go for Chromecast. It is also the best choice for those who have smart home devices.


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