I review streaming devices for a living — these are the Prime Day Roku deals I recommend

Prime Day deal Roku Streaming Stick+
(Image credit: Roku via Amazon)

There are a ton of Amazon Prime Day deals for streaming devices, so it's time to narrow down the list to stuff we'd actually use and recommend. And so let's start by stating the facts: my household, in fact, is a Roku household. 

No offense to anyone who likes their Firestick, but that interface pummels you with ads for Amazon stuff, and they still don't have Peacock. If you're OK with that, you should check out the 50% off Fire TV Stick 4K deal, now just $25.

The thing about Prime Day deals, though, is that it kinda feels like you're sifting through Amazon's discount bin, looking for gems. Are you getting a deal, or just helping Amazon empty its inventory? The good news, though, is that the best streaming device is on sale, as is the Roku I bought for my parents a few Black Fridays ago. 

Amazon Prime Day Roku deals I'd buy or recommend

Roku Ultra 2020: was $99 now $69 @ Amazon
The very best Roku

Roku Ultra 2020: was $99 now $69 @ Amazon
Dolby Vision and Atmos sound are yours in the best Roku for $30 off the regular price. Ethernet connectivity also gets you a more stable connection.

Roku Streaming Stick Plus: was $49 now $39 @ Amazon

Roku Streaming Stick Plus: was $49 now $39 @ Amazon
The best streaming device platform and 4K picture clarity is $10 off right now. Its easy-to-use design makes it a no-brainer for plugging into your TV.

The Roku Streaming Stick Plus is our pick for the best streaming device for a reason. It marries ultra high-def streaming picture quality with one of the best interfaces there is. Yes, the Apple TV has a crisper interface, but its $179 MSRP is 3.58 times as much as the $50 Roku Streaming Stick Plus — which is now even cheaper at $39 at Amazon for Prime Day. It's the easy pick for Prime Day Roku deals, and one I'd say is best for most people.

That said, you might not be most people. And if I'm the one clicking Buy and living with the new Roku device (or giving free tech support to the family member or friend I recommend it to), I would advise paying a little more — while still saving.

Prime Day Roku deals: I'd spend $30 more for the Roku Ultra

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Currently on sale at a nice $69 at Amazon for Prime Day, the Roku Ultra 2020 (normally $99) may be nearly twice as much as the $39 Roku Streaming Stick Plus, but it's worth it. If I were looking to buy a streaming device, I'd want to buy one that leaves me with zero regrets. And I'd hate to buy the Roku Streaming Stick Plus without knowing that it lacks the Roku Ultra's lost remote finder feature.

In our household, there is no bigger pain point for streaming than hunting down the remote. But if you hold down on the Roku Ultra's button, its remote will start ringing. Neither Amazon nor Apple have anything similar in their streaming arsenal, even though the latter is getting into the device-tracking business with the Apple AirTag

The perks don't end there, as the Roku Ultra is more future-proof than the Streaming Stick Plus. It's got support for two major standards that the Streaming Stick Plus doesn't: Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos. And while that's already a big deal for anyone who's upgraded their TV recently, it may not be a big deal for those who are still not ready to invest in a 4K set. 

I'd hate to buy the Roku Streaming Stick Plus without knowing that it lacks the Roku Ultra's lost remote finder feature.

But once you make that leap, you're going to want all your favorite Netflix shows, HBO Max movies and other content to look right — something that Dolby Vision ensures. You may have heard about how that new Apple TV 4K can auto-correct color output to match your TV, but did you know that it won't do that if you're using Dolby Vision? By getting a streaming device that packs this support, you're preparing yourself for that TV you're going to get sooner or later (have you checked out our best Prime Day TV deals?).

The other big difference for some is the Ethernet jack in the Roku Ultra. And while this may not help those in smaller living spaces, anyone in a larger house where your TV is far from your Wi-Fi router will know that wireless internet isn't always perfect everywhere. And life (as the last years have proven) has a funny way of putting you in situations you didn't expect. Buying a Roku Ultra with its Ethernet jack today will mean that you can take it anywhere you go in the future, and still be somewhat prepared (best of luck snaking those Ethernet cables through the home).

Prime Day Roku deals: Roku Ultra remote

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Last but not least, the Roku Ultra remote is better. Its primary perk is its headphone jack for private listening — so night owls don't need to bother their roommates or family. 

Then it's also got two programmable buttons, in case the standard buttons that Roku gives you (such as Netflix, Disney Plus, Hulu and Sling TV) don't cover all your favorites. I program mine for YouTube and HBO Max, so I can open those apps faster.

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Henry T. Casey
Managing Editor (Entertainment, Streaming)

Henry is a managing editor at Tom’s Guide covering streaming media, laptops and all things Apple, reviewing devices and services for the past seven years. Prior to joining Tom's Guide, he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. He's also covered the wild world of professional wrestling for Cageside Seats, interviewing athletes and other industry veterans.