Roku Recalls “Glitchy” 4K Streamers (Again)

Via Cordcutters News, we learn that Roku, Inc has been replacing defective streaming hardware:

Thank you for your recent purchase of a Roku 4, the newest addition to our line of streaming players. We are getting in touch after discovering a manufacturing glitch with a small number of Roku 4 players. We identified your Roku 4 player as potentially among this group, and as a result would like to replace it to avoid any potential issues that would impact your use and enjoyment.

While Roku hasn’t indicated what exactly the “glitch” is, and Cordcutter News hasn’t speculated, I assume it’s heat-related given multiple reports of units with noisy fans (and at least one that melted). As the recall has been going on for several months, with new outreach this week, I suspect Roku was unable or unwilling to pull the impacted batch from shelves — so, as boxes come online, the company contacts registered owners to arrange swap. By comparison, Amazon’s 4k Fire TV must run cooler, as it was engineered to dissipate heat without requiring a fan.

7 thoughts on “Roku Recalls “Glitchy” 4K Streamers (Again)”

  1. Looks like some Roku 4s left the factory without a thermal pad installed on the CPU. That’s likely the reason for the recall. The heatsink can’t cool the CPU, so the fan ends up working overtime, which results in it failing prematurely and being noising, like in the video.

  2. “By comparison, Amazon’s 4k Fire TV must run cooler, as it was engineered to dissipate heat without requiring a fan.”

    Low paid warehouses workers come into your home and blow on it when you’re not looking.

  3. With recent consumer electronics, thermal management is almost an after thought. You see it in everything from $100 media streamers to $3000 TV’s. A lot of it is just bad engineering or a breakdown between the hardware engineer, the mechanical engineer, and the test engineer who may or may not even be in the same country. But some of it is definitely due to trying to speed up the replacement churn. The days of your 18 year old TV or 30 year old radio are long gone. Roku being a smallish company needs to pay attention to customer complaints at the moment but once they hit some arbitrary critical mass good luck with anything out of warranty being actually repaired.

  4. Fortunately my Roku4 is very quiet. It has worked very well. I guess I got lucky and didn’t get one with fan issues or red push issues

  5. My Roku4 is actually cooler to the touch than my 4K FireTv. But I do have an HDMI switch on top of my FireTV and nothing on top of my Roku 4. So that could be why the FireTV is warmer.

  6. I have both my ATV and Roku setting out in free space, no heat sinks and no fans mean a device must free to get rid of heat.

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