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Looking for a way to use an internet browser for Roku? I did some research and found that Roku Web Browsers exist and that you can use them the same way you’d use an internet browser anywhere else online. There are even working Roku web browser hacks you can use that I’ll cover.
If you’re like me, then you want to use an internet browser for Roku to mirror zoom calls, access unique apps, forums or view web content that Roku just doesn’t already have built-in.
Here’s how to get a web browser on Roku:
- Use a Smartphone: Download “Web Cast Video” on iPhone or Android to cast a web browser on Roku.
- Cast from computer: Use chrome browser by selecting the three dots on top right and select “Cast”.
- Mirror from Windows: select “connections” from notification taskbar in windows to mirrored to Roku.
- You now have a web browser for Roku!
I’ll be covering the above steps in further detail in this post.
You’ll see all the ways a Roku internet browser is possible through my in-depth, step-by-step guides for each method listed… as well as some alternatives.
Related: Did you know you can jailbreak Roku in its own unique way? See my post here: Roku Hacks: How to jailbreak Roku.
Don’t worry. Not only is it simple to install a Roku web browser but you can do it in less than 30 seconds by following the tips in this guide
Short on time?
If you’re short on time… you can skip this guide and see How to watch any movie or show that exists in less than 10 minutes
- What if I want a built-in web browser for Roku?
- Does the Roku internet browser private channel “Web Browser X” or Poprism still work?
- Cast from a SmartPhone to get a Web browser for Roku:
- Cast from a Computer (Windows and Mac) to use as a Roku internet Browser
- Screen mirroring from a Windows Computer (windows only alternative)
- Well, why exactly is the firestick the ultimate alternative to a Roku for internet browsing?
- Is there a way to get a web browser on roku without hacking it?
- Is there a new version of Roku that works with hacked browsers?
Does Roku have a web browser?
Yes, there is a web browser on Roku. However, you’ll find the Roku web browser is not natively built-in or even supported as an app. How could Roku do this to us?
This means you’ll have to use a secondary device to cast. This includes, but is not limited to casting from a computer, laptop, iOS, or Android device.
Casting is the easiest, most common method to browse the internet on Roku. I’ll go through some alternatives as well.
If you haven’t considered an Nvidia Shield as an alternative to the Roku, then see our post on the 7 Cool Things You Can Do with Nvidia Shield TV Pro.
Is there really a web browser on Roku?
Yes, the free Roku Web Browsers listed in this post can be accessed by using a computer, smartphone, or tablet to cast a fully functional web browser app on Roku. This means the web browser is displayed with smooth navigation just like any other device using the internet.
For Smartphone, the Web Video Cast app is by far your best option. For computers, you can cast from Google Chrome browser or Windows Miracast to Roku. There are also a few more alternative methods.
So, technically a Roku internet browser isn’t built-in… however, you can still use a web browser by casting from a computer, phone, or tablet.
When using the smartphone casting via Web Video Cast app you’ll find the navigation works smoothly without pausing or buffing issues as well…
…especially when compared to Windows screen mirroring. (not the best from my experience)
What is the best web browser for Roku?
In the past, the best Roku web browser winner would have been a private channel called Web browser X (now removed). Since then, things have changed.
Now the “Web Video Cast app” for Android and iPhone is available. This allows reduced lag compared to casting or mirroring from other methods.
Other methods include using the chrome browser cast function on the computer or MiraCast on Windows to get a browser on Roku.
What if I want a built-in web browser for Roku?
Roku wants you to use their device for strictly watching video and entertainment and with the selected apps they have available…
Unfortunately, a built-in, native web browser is not possible for download on Roku the way it is on Firestick. If this is what you’re looking for, then an upgrade may be best suited for you.
Sure there are casting methods… but, what did I do instead?
My friends and I all switched to an Amazon Firestick instead of Roku. Why? It’s inexpensive and there’s a built-in web browser downloadable without any hassle at all.
Not to mention It’s extremely impressive in nearly every way. I bought one without thinking and I’m glad I impulsively did.
It was about time I upgraded and the streaming benefits far outweighed the cost which made for the perfect upgrade from Roku.
Oh, and did i mention it has a built-in, downloadable browser?
Does the Roku internet browser private channel “Web Browser X” or Poprism still work?
There are no longer private channels for browsing the web on Roku. however there are workarounds that we’ve included in this guide. These Roku private channels are typically created by third-party developers. This means they don’t always work consistently (shut down, or intermittently connect).
Sometimes they are not shut down indefinitely and are brought back depending on if the developer updates them.
In the past, there was Web browser X and Poprism, in which both appear not to be functional anymore. If casting from a secondary device is not an option for you. I advise checking back in if Web browser X is functional every now and then.
I actually found the Roku Web Browser from private channels to be a bit laggy (Roku removed them). These were browsers actively worked on by third-party developers.
Nowadays, the best option left is the Web Video Cast app, making it the clear winner. It isn’t laggy and you can use the browser from your phone to type and navigate instead of the Roku remote.
Unfortunately, Roku removed old ways to browse. At one point, private channel apps, such as Web browser X, were certainly a great option for those who didn’t want to cast from another device.
So, let’s dive into some different ways that will allow you to get a working Roku internet browser.
How to get a Web Browser for Roku (Roku Internet Browser)
Many of my readers often ask me: Is there is a free web browser on Roku? There are plenty of free web browsers for roku I’ll be listing in this post for you to use the internet on. The quickest, most common way to get a Roku browser is through using smartphone and Wifi to cast.
This method is actually more effective than having the Roku Web Browser on the device itself because you’ll be able to not only use the web browser, but type using your phone which is easier than using the Roku remote.
Cast from a SmartPhone to get a Web browser for Roku:
Did you know there is an app to get an actual web browser on Roku? This free app is called “Web Video Cast” and includes seamless navigation… No clunky functions. This app can be used on both iPhone and Android to cast Twitch to Roku. In fact, you can cast your entire browser display this way.
This app allows the very best navigation and controls for casting iPhone or Android to Roku while also minimizing any potential lag.
Here’s how to get a Roku web browser by casting from Smartphone (Android or iPhone):
- Go to Google Play or Apple app store and search “Web Video Cast” browser app
- Download and launch the app to begin set up.
- Next, use the browser like you would on a phone or computer.
- Then, Locate and tap the cast icon option towards the top of the phone to cast the internet browser to Roku.
- Congratulations! You now have a Roku internet browser!
Cast from a Computer (Windows and Mac) to use as a Roku internet Browser
Another way to get an internet browser for Roku is through screen-casting or mirroring a computer or laptop browser on Roku. For this to work you’ll need to cast or screen mirror as you’ll see in the examples below.
This method works well for both Windows and Mac. It is done by using the cast button from the chrome browser to Roku.
Here’s how to get a Roku internet browser by casting from a Mac or Windows computer:
- First, confirm both Roku and computer are on the same WiFi Network.
- Open the web browser on Google Chrome, then click the three vertical dotted buttons (the dots that open settings on chrome). This can be located by looking directly to the right of your Chrome URL browser
- Select Cast from the dropdown menu and wait for Roku to appear.
- Choose the Roku device.
- Enjoy Dailymotion on Roku!
I get asked time and time again, “Paul, What do you personally use?”.
Well, I got tired of using a secondary device to cast… and grabbed an Amazon Firestick. (downloadable/built-in browser). I decided to get this because it is extremely inexpensive compared to the benefits it provides. For those who want it all, there’s also the Amazon TV cube.
So, If you’re anything like me you might be considering skipping the hassle and just grabbing a Firestick.
Screen mirroring from a Windows Computer (windows only alternative)
An alternative way to enable the use of an internet/web browser on Roku is by screen mirroring from your PC or laptop. This is especially useful for when your iPhone or Android is running low on battery. The only con to this method is that it lags a bit compared to using the web video cast app.
Here’s how to screen mirror from a Windows computer to allow a web browser on Roku:
- On Roku, ensure the “screen mirroring” setting is switched on by locating “system” and selecting screen mirroring: “always-on”.
- Next, check to be sure your PC (Windows) is connected to the same WiFi as Roku.
- Cast your Window’s display with your web browser on it by locating to notifications at the bottom right of your taskbar.
- Select, “connect to a wireless display”. Newer models can add a Roku device via Bluetooth on windows.
- Windows will now scan for devices. Once the Roku device appears listed: hit connect.
- Congrats! You now have screen mirrored to use your internet browser on Roku.
This uses Windows MiraCast which is built-in, and free. You may not even know you have it!
So, whats my personal top method so far out of these listed? Well, besides upgrading to an Amazon firestick your best bet will be using the “Web video Cast” app as its both functional and smooth… almost as if you have an actual built-in web browser Roku app.
As mentioned, I chose the specific model Amazon Firestick… I’ve been mentioning repeatedly in this post because I can’t stress enough how much of a quick, easy fix it was to all my streaming entertainment.
Well, why exactly is the firestick the ultimate alternative to a Roku for internet browsing?
Well, on top of the easy to install internet browsing compared to Roku… there’s no need for the use of phone or computer casting… It also has many more useful apps for download than I can count. When I received it I immediately realized how drastically the Firestick blew away my Roku Ultra, and for much less of a cost.
I’ve been calling it “The ultimate streaming upgrade” around my friends… they made fun of me at first, but eventually, they all got one.
The Firestick allows for side loading apps, compared to Roku, which only has Roku Private Channels as a similar alternative method, which many may view insufficient for their viewing needs.
What about a TCL Roku Web Browser?
Unfortunately there is no differencing to get a Web browser on TCL Roku TV compared to a standard Roku streaming stick or set-top box. You’ll have to use similar methods I’ve listed in this post, such as casting or screen-mirroring, to get a web browser on TCL Roku TV.
Roku Web Browser Hack
The only way to get a web browser on Roku outside of the standard methods and workaround methods listed is by seeking out the newest web browsers as they may have a new integration with Roku.
The most effective way is to either rollback to a previous version that allows the Roku to get a hacked web browser, or grab a very old version of Roku on eBay that still works.
These methods are considered extreme in my opinion and if you really need a web browser on Roku, but don’t want to hack the Roku, then you’ll want to simply grab something like the Amazon Fire Stick; where this is possible.
You can always use the screen mirroring app as an alternative-since the app is available on both Google Play and Apple App Store, both Android (and iPhone users) are able to benefit from this. Remember, Opera TV, which casts all your mobile games and apps, can be mirrored onto your large display screen TV in 1080p HD quality with minimal input lag.
Is there a way to get a web browser on roku without hacking it?
Yes, the methods listed in this guide solve this and include either using a phone app to cast your web browser from phone to Roku or Using opera browser to mirror and stream your current view on desktop or phone.
This uses bluetooth technology to allow the content on your iPhone or Android device to be display on the Roku, which means the web browser is technically on the smartphone, but displayed on the Roku. In theory, you’re still using a Roku web Browser since Roku is the connector.
Is there a new version of Roku that works with hacked browsers?
It’s very common for people to look for a way to hack the roku and put a web browser on it, but it’s not necessary. While all Roku systems will work if you find a way to hack them, hacking your roku with the latest available options on the market today is even more difficult and not advised.
If anything, older versions of Roku are more easily ‘hacked’ and even so not worth the time and effort to get a web browser; especially when there are more simple ways such as casting your phone using the casting app to the Roku.
What is the difference between streaming and casting on Roku?
By streaming you are actually doing what you would normally do with a browser on the Roku. Streaming on a Roku can mean going to a website and it is displayed on your connected TV… that’s streaming. Loading and buffering from a source for a video to appear; which Roku can do and theres no need to hack the Roku to do this. The Roku is very different than a Firestick in this regard- there is no side loading.
On the other hand, casting allows you to use your phone, tablet, or laptop as a remote controller for your Roku device. So instead of just looking at the browser on your TV screen you can also control it using your phone or tablet for videos, movies, websites, games and more with the right casting app- this only works for web apps, though.
How do I get a web browser on Roku outside of the standard methods and workaround methods listed above?
There are no other ways with the standard roku devices besides this as Roku does not have a native web browser, but there are some ‘workaround’ methods.
For example, its possible to:
1. Screen mirror
2. Casting, which works fine with the general web browser such as Firefox, Opera or Chrome if it’s mobile and has the option.
3. You can install a third party web browser and cast it on to your Roku using the Google cast system to Roku (this is ideal for both iPad, iPhone and Android users)
4. Install a custom hack on an older Roku you get from Ebay, a friend, or have lying around.
You should know that casting may not work in every scenario (for example, it will not work if you’ve already installed something that prevents it on the Roku, or if you have an app or firewall on the device that simply prevents casting).
Therefore, work arounds are always recommended through this article and the general methods listed above.
Flowing from the thoughts above, it’s clear that getting a web browser on Roku is very possible. The only limitation is that you must cast or screen mirror in order to do so.
The absolute method is to simply cast from the Web Video Cast app, which is available on both Google Play and Apple App Store. So, both Android and iPhone users can take advantage of this. It also boasts smooth navigation compared to screen mirroring or casting via Roku screen mirroring options.
The next method is by casting from a computer or laptop (mac or windows). This can easily be done through using the screencasting methods outlined in this post. These methods for casting a browser from a computer to Roku TV require using the free Google Chrome web browser or Miracast on windows.
Roku does not have a native, browser built-in to surf the web on… you’ll need a streaming device such as the Fire TV as mentioned earlier. There unfortunately is no app created by Roku for web browsing as wel all hope.
In the past, Roku had Web Browser X which was a private Roku channel to browse the internet on. This allowed you to use an internet browser for Roku and without using a secondary device such as a computer, tablet or smartphone. However, it appears now that Roku is actively removing the third-party, developer-created, internet browsers on Roku.
It’s clear Roku does no want you to browse the web on their device. This is all the more reason to consider the specific model Firestick I listed earlier as a viable alternative. (Not to mention the massive additional streaming app benefits)