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Roku is fixing the streaming issues making everyone so angry right now

Updated Nov 23rd, 2021 4:44PM EST
Roku OS 10.5 caused streaming issues for many users
Image: Roku

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Roku is one of the top producers of digital media players on the market. The company’s operating system powers its media players as well as TVs, and over the years, Roku OS has continually gained new features and functionality. Unfortunately, there’s always the chance that a software update will do more harm than good. We just saw all of the problems in iOS 15. That appears to be the case for Roku OS 10.5, as customers have been reporting streaming issues after installing the update.

Roku confirms streaming issues caused by update

Roku first announced the 10.5 update for its OS in September. The update then began rolling out to Roku devices and TVs in October. Shortly after the rollout began, users began running into problems with the software. As spotted by TechCrunch, users on Reddit and Roku’s online support forums have been reporting issues with apps such as Netflix and Disney Plus not working.

“HBO doesn’t work. ESPN doesn’t work. Disney doesn’t work. Xfinity doesn’t work. Netflix is sketchy. Amazon Prime doesn’t work,” said one Roku user on Reddit this past Sunday. “All started with the OS update a couple days ago. Now I have a worthless box by my tv. And some monthly subscriptions I’m paying for but can’t use.” Several other users echoed his complaints.

The company finally responded with a forum post on Monday shortly after TechCrunch published its report. According to a Roku community manager, the firmware update is affecting a small number of users with “certain older Roku TV models or older Roku Ultra players.” She said that the company was actively investigating the issues and working to resolve them quickly.

A few hours later, Roku updated the post. The company noted that it was making a software rollback available to affected users. Anyone who experiences issues on a Roku Ultra model 4660, 4661, 4662, or 4670, as well as those with a Roku TV model 7XXX, can manually check for an update. If you are one of the affected users, follow these instructions to manually update your Roku:

  1. Press the Home button on your Roku remote.
  2. Scroll up or down and select Settings.
  3. Select System > System update > Check Now to manually check for updates.

Roku also posted a link to the forum thread on its official Twitter profile in order to spread the word:

Other problems with Roku devices

Broken apps are seemingly just the tip of the iceberg, though. Separately, some users say that upon receiving an “Introducing Roku OS 10.5” pop-up, their devices would freeze. Last Friday, an employee noted that the company had temporarily disabled the pop-up. He recommended that those impacted should unplug the power from the Roku device for a few minutes and plug it back in again.

Finally, in what appears to be an unrelated incident, some Roku device owners have been reporting problems with YouTube TV. The reports began popping up on Roku’s forums around the same time that OS 10.5 began rolling out widely. Since then, YouTube TV subscribers on other platforms have started to experience issues, including this Twitter user on a TiVo Stream 4K:

Roku has since noted that Google has “taken ownership of the playback issue” on YouTube TV.

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.