Roku update that broke AirPlay & HomeKit has yet to be fixed weeks later

Posted:
in General Discussion edited December 2021
An apparent bug in a recent Roku software build has broken support for both Apple's HomeKit and AirPlay systems, and weeks later, there doesn't appear to be a fix in sight.

A Roku streaming device
A Roku streaming device


User reports of problems with the Roku platform started appearing when the company rolled out Roku OS 10.5. According to user reports on the Roku forums and other outlets, the update caused a number of problems on older streaming devices and set-top boxes.

At the time Roku OS 10.5 was released, media outlets like TechCrunch reported on issues with a number of streaming platforms caused by the release, including HBO Max and Disney+. Other issues included frozen screens and non-functioning Roku remotes.

Roku appeared to be aware of the issue and said it would be working on a fix. In the interim, it allowed users to roll back to a stable build. However, nearly five weeks later, it seems like the company still hasn't fully restored AirPlay and HomeKit functionality.

As of Friday, Dec. 17, Roku users are still having problems with both AirPlay and HomeKit. Users describe being met with a blank black screen when attempting to cast a video using AirPlay on Roku streaming devices. Additionally, the problems only seem to appear on Roku OS 10.5 and later.

"When rolled back to 10.0 everything worked fine but then the system automatically updated to 10.5 again and broke all the same stuff," wrote a user on the Roku forums. "It has been weeks now with no change and we are stuck with a still bricked TV that even the over the air function does not work properly let alone the streaming functions."

It isn't clear what is causing the AirPlay and HomeKit problems, with Roku support staff seemingly only giving generic troubleshooting advice.

Read on AppleInsider
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 23
    Bosa said:
    Why are people with iPhones using Roku? And not Apple TV? My Tv has Roku and it’s clunky and basically not usable 
    Apple TV is an added box/cost ?  Fragmenting tracking for profiling privacy ?
    edited December 2021 williamlondondarkvader
  • Reply 2 of 23
    OferOfer Posts: 129unconfirmed, member
    Bosa said:
    Why are people with iPhones using Roku? And not Apple TV? My Tv has Roku and it’s clunky and basically not usable 
    Because my Roku device cost me $30 giving me access to all of the features I want (stream Netflix, Hulu, Disney, AppleTV, and let me use AirPlay), while an Apple TV 4K starts at $179 for a bunch of features that I’ll probably never use.

    when Apple treats their streaming box as more than a hobby piece (their words), provides an actually good remote and maybe invests in some quality gaming titles that rival PlayStation/Xbox/Switch, maybe then I’ll consider spending that kind of money on it. Until then, I’m happy with what I’ve got.
    williamlondondarkvader
  • Reply 3 of 23
    chasmchasm Posts: 2,535member
    Ofer said:
    Because my Roku device cost me $30 giving me access to all of the features I want (stream Netflix, Hulu, Disney, AppleTV, and let me use AirPlay), while an Apple TV 4K starts at $179 for a bunch of features that I’ll probably never use.
    Have you ever pondered WHY a Roku/Fire stick/Chromecast cost so much less than an Apple TV box? I’ll clue you in: massive amounts of data collection and additional ads.

    I have a Roku-based smart TV, and once a year I dutifully connect it to the internet to check for firmware updates, then promptly disconnect it again. My Apple TV box — which in addition to more privacy/security offers a vastly superior interface, ARC/eARC support, CEC support, Apple Arcade, and access to all streaming services (including all the smaller services), HomeKit, and AirPlay — serves as the “smarts” rather than my would-be data-mining television for any streaming service I can think of, along with the media assets on the computers in the house.

    In terms of TV service, the Apple TV box has been the smartest thing I’ve ever bought next to my dual-HomePod “sound bar.” Being a cheapskate has a lot of hidden costs, beyond the occasional publicly known problems like Roku’s previous fights with YouTube and Disney and this latest lack of support for AirPlay/HomeKit.
    williamlondontwokatmewgregoriusmiOS_Guy80watto_cobraStrangeDays
  • Reply 4 of 23
    I stopped trying to explain to folks why Fire Stick and Roku devices are dirt cheap. 

    Beyond the obvious differences in build quality ( you may or may not be surprised at the DOA rate on Roku, and Amazon has an apparent endless supply of “refreshed” Fire Sticks), I know Apple isn’t selling data on what I watch to scores of different marketing operations. That may not matter to some, but it matters to me. 

    I use a VPN, Ecosia instead of Google, no Facebook/Instagram/LinkedIn, that sort of thing. Being “off the grid” is a fantasy in a normal life, but we can do things to stop the bleeding. 
    edited December 2021 EsquireCatsiOS_Guy80williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 23
    I have three Apple TVs sitting in a drawer because the system is basically obnoxious. Their constant screaming to reenter PWs. to change streams and the hassles to change users (and associated PWs ) before you can access programming from different accounts will have you looking up pws most of the evening instead of viewing. And enetering them on those remotes is enough to make suicide legal! The screen is cluttered as much as any other box but in a different way. Not as cluttered  as my two Fire TV Cubes but more than the Roku in my theater. And the remotes!! Apple=horrible, Fire pretty nice and Roku solid and easy to use. Backlighting would help on all three. Regarding data collection, much of it is program viewing which I would urge them to collect for the simple reason they will sell it to the ratings companies, and programs I like get reported as having eyes on, hopefully prolonging their existence. Which leads us to pricing…. Why not save money for equal performance? Not to mention Apples habit of knocking  products, particularly these, into the twilight zone with updates for which there is no recourse, as has happened to two in the past. Which has led to me throwing the perfectly good remaining HD and two 4K Apple TVs into a drawere marked “get rid of”.
    williamlondon
  • Reply 6 of 23
    Bought ROKU on whim expecting to take it back but instead just disconnected my AppleTV. Great remote, apps for everything under the sun, super responsive and fast. It just works and for us and have not been affected by this issue as I don’t use airplay much. 
  • Reply 7 of 23
    I use the Channels app with my HDHomeRun tuners.  The Channels app does not exist for Roku.  I also use Plex and it’s a disaster on Roku.  The new AppleTV remote is far and away better than the the old one and I think it is just as good if not better than the Roku remote.  For whatever reason, the Roku seems to eat batteries.  I’ve never had a set of batteries last more than 2-3 months.  I’ll take a Firestick 4K Max over the Roku any day.  The AppleTV is and always will be my first choice.  Never had any problems with having to re-enter passwords once it’s properly setup.  The ability to use my iPhone or iPad as a keyboard when it’s time to enter passwords makes the process fast and easy not to mention that you can also use keychain for the passwords.  I’m not aware of any such ability to use a phone as a keyboard for either Roku or Firestick.  
    edited December 2021 williamlondonwatto_cobraStrangeDays
  • Reply 8 of 23
    As for the AppleTV being a "hobby" - seems Apple treat their "hobby" more seriously than Roku treats their main revenue stream.

    I always keep these sorts of things in mind when people faff on about home vendor-bias and antitrust. I'm keenly aware of these things, but if the competition behaves like garbage their failures aren't the result of anticompetitive behaviour.

    Take Spotify for example, how long did it take them to get an Apple Watch app? While other music vendors were in there early. I pop them and Roku right into that basket of vendors that don't take their main business seriously and frequently disregard their customers for unexplainable reasons.

    williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 23
    microbe said:
    I have three Apple TVs sitting in a drawer because the system is basically obnoxious. Their constant screaming to reenter PWs. to change streams and the hassles to change users (and associated PWs ) before you can access programming from different accounts will have you looking up pws most of the evening instead of viewing. And enetering them on those remotes is enough to make suicide legal! The screen is cluttered as much as any other box but in a different way. Not as cluttered  as my two Fire TV Cubes but more than the Roku in my theater. And the remotes!! Apple=horrible, Fire pretty nice and Roku solid and easy to use. Backlighting would help on all three. Regarding data collection, much of it is program viewing which I would urge them to collect for the simple reason they will sell it to the ratings companies, and programs I like get reported as having eyes on, hopefully prolonging their existence. Which leads us to pricing…. Why not save money for equal performance? Not to mention Apples habit of knocking  products, particularly these, into the twilight zone with updates for which there is no recourse, as has happened to two in the past. Which has led to me throwing the perfectly good remaining HD and two 4K Apple TVs into a drawere marked “get rid of”.
    Odd rant. I use both a roku and Apple TV. The Apple TV is just a much better quality device . Roku needs you to sign in too all your services like Netflix, Hulu etc anyway so your “complaint” about signing in all the time on atv vs roku is just plain wrong. In any event atv will let you use your iPhone for password  entry, and auto fill from keychain. Lastly, I like the clean modern atv remote instead of the play school roku device.
    williamlondonlkruppwatto_cobrastompycypresstreethe1maximusStrangeDays
  • Reply 10 of 23
    I would agree - the weirdest factually incorrect rant I’ve seen in a while. 

    But different strokes I guess. I have all my firesticks as backups on different inputs while ATV 4ks do all the heavy lifting in this house. 

    loopless said:
    microbe said:
    I have three Apple TVs sitting in a drawer because the system is basically obnoxious. Their constant screaming to reenter PWs. to change streams and the hassles to change users (and associated PWs ) before you can access programming from different accounts will have you looking up pws most of the evening instead of viewing. And enetering them on those remotes is enough to make suicide legal! The screen is cluttered as much as any other box but in a different way. Not as cluttered  as my two Fire TV Cubes but more than the Roku in my theater. And the remotes!! Apple=horrible, Fire pretty nice and Roku solid and easy to use. Backlighting would help on all three. Regarding data collection, much of it is program viewing which I would urge them to collect for the simple reason they will sell it to the ratings companies, and programs I like get reported as having eyes on, hopefully prolonging their existence. Which leads us to pricing…. Why not save money for equal performance? Not to mention Apples habit of knocking  products, particularly these, into the twilight zone with updates for which there is no recourse, as has happened to two in the past. Which has led to me throwing the perfectly good remaining HD and two 4K Apple TVs into a drawere marked “get rid of”.
    Odd rant. I use both a roku and Apple TV. The Apple TV is just a much better quality device . Roku needs you to sign in too all your services like Netflix, Hulu etc anyway so your “complaint” about signing in all the time on atv vs roku is just plain wrong. In any event atv will let you use your iPhone for password  entry, and auto fill from keychain. Lastly, I like the clean modern atv remote instead of the play school roku device.

    StrangeDays
  • Reply 11 of 23
    microbe said:
    I have three Apple TVs sitting in a drawer because the system is basically obnoxious. Their constant screaming to reenter PWs. to change streams and the hassles to change users (and associated PWs ) before you can access programming from different accounts will have you looking up pws most of the evening instead of viewing. And enetering them on those remotes is enough to make suicide legal! The screen is cluttered as much as any other box but in a different way. Not as cluttered  as my two Fire TV Cubes but more than the Roku in my theater. And the remotes!! Apple=horrible, Fire pretty nice and Roku solid and easy to use. Backlighting would help on all three. Regarding data collection, much of it is program viewing which I would urge them to collect for the simple reason they will sell it to the ratings companies, and programs I like get reported as having eyes on, hopefully prolonging their existence. Which leads us to pricing…. Why not save money for equal performance? Not to mention Apples habit of knocking  products, particularly these, into the twilight zone with updates for which there is no recourse, as has happened to two in the past. Which has led to me throwing the perfectly good remaining HD and two 4K Apple TVs into a drawere marked “get rid of”.
    I’m trying to wrap my head around the fact you think the Apple UI is more cluttered then the others. 

    The first point I will make, there’s no ads anywhere in the UI. If you feel like the Home Screen is getting cluttered, make folders and organize the content. 

    Second, you only need to input a password on the initial use/install of an app. Unless the app logs you out that is, but that’s up to that provider. For example, Netflix, does this once every 6 months or so. If you’re talking about downloading apps, go to the settings and tell it to never require a password to download an app.  Entering any information is simple enough, if you have your phone nearby, it’ll alert you that you can type from that, ** PS THIS WORKS FOR PASSWORDS TOO. ** If you happen to use a password manager like Keychain or Lastpass, you don’t even have to type, it’ll auto fill with the tap of the button. 

    Three, the new remote blows the older one out of the water, but to be honest I actually really like the older one as well. I never had an issue using it, and the battery was amazing. 

    With all of that being said, if you hate them that much, I will gladly take them off your hands. 
    edited December 2021 StrangeDays
  • Reply 12 of 23
    One thing that hasn’t been brought up about the difference in pricing is that, although the Apple TV is a better built Product, with better hardware, it’s also has no ads anywhere within the UI. Ads within apps, are based on your subscription level, so that has nothing to do with Apple. This is one of the main reasons why those other devices are so much cheaper, they are partially subsidized by ads.  

    Roku, although has a better interface then Fire devices, There’s still ads within the UI. FireOS though is RIDDLED with ads, especially with the updated UI. Your actual apps are within the small bar which takes up like 5% of the screen, the rest of the screen is crap from prime video, or new apps, or whatever they are trying to push. 
    edited December 2021
  • Reply 13 of 23
    eightzeroeightzero Posts: 2,717member
    Where is the option to play OTA TV on my Apple TV? My TCL/Roku runs that. 

    I'd buy a 4k Apple TV with a ATSC 3 next gen tuner and a coax plug on the back. 
  • Reply 14 of 23
    I have 2 Telstra TV boxes, made by Roku and 2 Apple TVs there is a substantial difference in quality. I have run ethernet to everything in the house that can take it and the Telstra TVs still drop off the network somtimes
  • Reply 15 of 23
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 2,780member
    I am using AppleTV box for sometime and I like it. Clean UI, simple to use and hardly WiFi streaming problem with my Internet 2-3Mbit/sec download speed. Roku.Fire sticks are cheaper but I invest once and use for years. I also like AirPlay 2 working flawlessly with AppleTV which Amazon fire sticks don't support and now Roku has problem.

    People argue that all new TVs come with AirPlay, Streaming Apps, and voice assistant(Alexa,Google, etc) support than why we need Streaming box/stick ?  Problem is TVs OS  and App support is not well integrated,seamless like everyone complains about how cumbersome Samsung TV OS UI is ? If TV manufacturers can make it right than you don't need Streaming boxes.

    williamlondon
  • Reply 16 of 23
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 2,780member
    microbe said:
    I have three Apple TVs sitting in a drawer because the system is basically obnoxious. Their constant screaming to reenter PWs. to change streams and the hassles to change users (and associated PWs ) before you can access programming from different accounts will have you looking up pws most of the evening instead of viewing. And enetering them on those remotes is enough to make suicide legal! The screen is cluttered as much as any other box but in a different way. Not as cluttered  as my two Fire TV Cubes but more than the Roku in my theater. And the remotes!! Apple=horrible, Fire pretty nice and Roku solid and easy to use. Backlighting would help on all three. Regarding data collection, much of it is program viewing which I would urge them to collect for the simple reason they will sell it to the ratings companies, and programs I like get reported as having eyes on, hopefully prolonging their existence. Which leads us to pricing…. Why not save money for equal performance? Not to mention Apples habit of knocking  products, particularly these, into the twilight zone with updates for which there is no recourse, as has happened to two in the past. Which has led to me throwing the perfectly good remaining HD and two 4K Apple TVs into a drawere marked “get rid of”.
    I’m trying to wrap my head around the fact you think the Apple UI is more cluttered then the others. 

    The first point I will make, there’s no ads anywhere in the UI. If you feel like the Home Screen is getting cluttered, make folders and organize the content. 

    Second, you only need to input a password on the initial use/install of an app. Unless the app logs you out that is, but that’s up to that provider. For example, Netflix, does this once every 6 months or so. If you’re talking about downloading apps, go to the settings and tell it to never require a password to download an app.  Entering any information is simple enough, if you have your phone nearby, it’ll alert you that you can type from that, ** PS THIS WORKS FOR PASSWORDS TOO. ** If you happen to use a password manager like Keychain or Lastpass, you don’t even have to type, it’ll auto fill with the tap of the button. 

    Three, the new remote blows the older one out of the water, but to be honest I actually really like the older one as well. I never had an issue using it, and the battery was amazing. 

    With all of that being said, if you hate them that much, I will gladly take them off your hands. 

    Please just don't leave AppleTV box/es in drawer. Sell it and plenty will buy from you.
    the1maximuswilliamlondonStrangeDays
  • Reply 17 of 23
    eightzero said:
    Where is the option to play OTA TV on my Apple TV? My TCL/Roku runs that. 

    I'd buy a 4k Apple TV with a ATSC 3 next gen tuner and a coax plug on the back. 
    I run a plex server with a TV Tuner added to it. I get 67 OTA Channels, that are made available across every device I own including, my iPhones, iPads, Apple TV’s, and even my Roku’s that I no longer use. I should also mention that I have access to those channels, regardless of where I am, as long as I have an internet connection. 
    edited December 2021 williamlondonStrangeDays
  • Reply 18 of 23
    eightzeroeightzero Posts: 2,717member
    eightzero said:
    Where is the option to play OTA TV on my Apple TV? My TCL/Roku runs that. 

    I'd buy a 4k Apple TV with a ATSC 3 next gen tuner and a coax plug on the back. 
    I run a plex server with a TV Tuner added to it. I get 67 OTA Channels, that are made available across every device I own including, my iPhones, iPads, Apple TV’s, and even my Roku’s that I no longer use. I should also mention that I have access to those channels, regardless of where I am, as long as I have an internet connection. 
    Cool. I have exactly no need for that. The Plex server you run is free? No subscription costs?

    Apple will never make a AppleTV with an OTA tuner. Ever. As grandpa usta say, "no money in that."
    edited December 2021 williamlondon
  • Reply 19 of 23
    eightzero said:
    Where is the option to play OTA TV on my Apple TV? My TCL/Roku runs that. 

    I'd buy a 4k Apple TV with a ATSC 3 next gen tuner and a coax plug on the back. 
    Roku does not have a tuner built in.  Your TCL TV happens to run the Roku OS, but the tuner is part of the TV, not the "Roku".

    You have to have a TV w/tuner with both Apple TV & Roku (unless you have network based tuner from SiliconDust).  And yes - with a network based tuner, OTA TV is free via the HDHomeRun app on the Apple TV.  AND - SiliconDust has an ATSC3, 4K, 4 x tuner network based box today.  I'm in the Indianapolis, Indiana, USA region & have about 15 4K channels available.

    I haven't seen a TV yet that has a built-in ATSC3 tuner...
    edited December 2021 stompyStrangeDays
  • Reply 20 of 23
    eightzero said:
    Where is the option to play OTA TV on my Apple TV? My TCL/Roku runs that. 

    I'd buy a 4k Apple TV with a ATSC 3 next gen tuner and a coax plug on the back. 
    Why would I want a tuner into the ATV when the TV already has a tuner? I just switch the input and use the TV. 
    williamlondon
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