Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K vs. Roku Premiere: Which should you buy?

When comparing the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K vs. the Roku Premiere, your choice might just be down to your allegiance to Amazon's broader ecosystem of products and services because they both offer a ton of great content to stream with user-friendly interfaces. Both can deliver 4K HDR quality where available, while the Fire TV Stick offers a remote with built-in voice controls. In addition, both offer support for Alexa — but only the Roku is compatible with Google Assistant for searching for and playing content.

Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K vs. Roku Premiere: Let's break it down

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Roku Premiere remote and streaming device

(Image credit: Android Central)

The first thing you'll notice is that there are some distinct differences in design between the two. The Fire TV Stick 4K is a compact dongle that plugs right into the back of your TV, with an included HDMI extender cable if space is pretty tight. The Roku Premiere is similarly compact and includes an HDMI for connecting to your TV, but it's light enough to be mounted to the back of your TV.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Fire TV Stick 4KRoku Premiere
Supports 4KYesYes
Supports HDRYesYes
Remote with microphoneYesNo
Works with AlexaYesYes
Works with Google AssistantNoYes
GamingAmazon LunaNone

On the software side of things, you're bound for a similar experience no matter which device you choose. Both devices let you customize your home screen with your favorite content sources, and the interfaces are intuitive and familiar if you've ever used a streaming service before.

Amazon does a predictably good job pointing you towards its own video streaming and Alexa's built-in functionality on the remote. Of course, if you want, you can also control your TV through Amazon's minimalistic Fire TV app (opens in new tab). You'll be able to find the most popular streaming services on this, the best Fire TV stick, including YouTube and Apple TV+. Who would have thought that when this product came out?

Roku also makes some of the best streaming products, but it has no direct stake in the streaming service game. It isn't competing so head-to-head with Google, so there are a ton of streaming services and channels under the Roku umbrella. Each service gets equal weight on the Roku platform, but the remote does prominently feature hotkey buttons for Netflix, Sling, Hulu, and DirecTV Now, so that's a convenient inclusion if you're a subscriber to any of those services.

While there is no microphone on the remote, you can control your TV with the Roku app. From here, you can control everything from your phone, plug in headphones for private viewing sessions, and use a mobile keyboard when you're searching for content to watch. You can also conveniently cast content from your phone to your Roku-connected TV, which might come in handy the next time you're able to have a party.

Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K vs. Roku Premiere: Which should you choose?

Amazon Fire TV Stick interface

(Image credit: Andrew Myrick)

The first question is whether you should buy either of them. While these two streaming devices get the job done and offer 4K support, they are without a doubt, the budget 4K options. In fact, the Roku Premiere doesn't even feature in our best Roku list as it has been replaced by other picks with a few more bells and whistles. 

For those considering the Fire TV Stick 4K, it's worth considering if your TV supports 4K at all. If not, you might be better served by a cheaper device as we saw in our Fire TV Stick and Fire TV Stick Lite review. You also might find the upgrade to Wi-Fi 6 and faster CPU to be worth the extra money like we saw in our Fire TV Stick 4K Max review.

These two streamers are pretty evenly matched in the most important area. Still, we must pick a winner, and ultimately we feel that the Alexa Voice Remote and slicker interface weigh in Amazon's favor. Amazon's streaming stick also comes with faster Wi-Fi support so you see fewer loading bars when starting up a new show. However, if you're not heavily invested in Amazon's ecosystem, or if you want access to Google Play apps, then the Roku Premiere might be the better option for you. Either way, you're going to be entertained!

Jeramy Johnson
Editor-in-chief

Jeramy is the Editor-in-Chief of Android Central. He is proud to help *Keep Austin Weird* and loves hiking in the hill country of central Texas with a breakfast taco in each hand. You can follow him on Twitter at @jeramyutgw.

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