Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Another nail in the Roku 4 coffin

Back in March, Roku announced that they were discontinuing support for the Roku 4 (model 4400). That came as no surprise to me. In fact, the surprise -- and there was one -- was that they supported the Roku 4 for as long as they did.

From launch, the Roku 4 had all kinds of problems. The idea of the Roku 4 was, in its day, a good idea. The execution of that idea was a huge misstep by Roku.

The fan (yes, it had a fan) was noisy at times, and all kinds of glitches happened. I was watching reports from owners carefully at the time, since I was thinking of getting one. I had always owned at least one of the top of the line Roku devices. I owned a Roku 3, and when the Roku 4 came out, I considered getting one.

The only draw was 4K, but as I didn't own a 4K TV at the time, I decided to wait and see what else it offered to determine if upgrading was the way for me to go. All the reports of issues with the device convinced me to not get one. It was the first top-of-the-line Roku that I didn't purchase.

Roku discontinued the Roku 4 within a year, replacing it with the Ultra (finally discontinuing the Roku 3 at the same time). I waited on the Ultra as well, after the Roku 4 debacle. After a year, I finally bought an Ultra, but continued to use the Roku 3 until just a couple of years ago.

Back to Roku's announcement from March. The Roku 4 isn't getting the new Roku OS 12 software update, as it's no longer a supported device. And now another blow to Roku 4 owners. Disney+ is dropping Roku 4 support:

According to a message posted on Roku 4 on May 30th, 2023, Disney+ will be ending support for older Roku players, including the Roku 4. This means if you want to keep watching Disney+ and you own a Roku 4, you will need to upgrade to a newer Roku player.

This news comes as Roku has announced that it is ending support for the Roku 4, which was Roku’s first 4K streaming player it ever made. The Roku 4 was later replaced by the Roku Ultra, which is now the top-of-the-line Roku Player.

A lot of people who bought a Roku 4 will be very unhappy. However, I suspect many of them have not been as happy as owners of the Roku Ultra, which was the Roku 4 done right. My Streaming Life never had to endure a Roku 4, but for those that did, this is not good news, and may be the reason they were needing to get a better Roku device.

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