In anticipation of the launch of the Apple TV+ streaming service on November 1, Apple launched their Apple TV app on Roku in the last 24 hours. This marks the first time users have been able to access their iTunes movie and TV library on their TV without having to use an Apple TV device or connect a PC to their television.
At first glance, the app looks pretty much the same as it does on an Apple TV, with the same user interface layout. You can browse, purchase, or rent movies and TV shows, and subscribe to Apple TV Channels like HBO, Shudder, CBS All Access, Showtime, etc. While it is pretty awesome that Roku users like myself can now access movies and TV shows they collected on iTunes that were never able to migrate to other services like Vudu through Movies Anywhere, the app on Roku currently has a few hiccups.
First off, the app is a bit more sluggish on the Roku than it does on an Apple TV device, very likely due to the lower processing power and storage limitations of most Roku devices. It does appear that 4K video with HDR10 is supported. However, at launch, only Dolby Digital audio is supported – currently, there is no Dolby Atmos support. Also, currently there is no way to access a movie’s special features on the Roku version of the Apple TV app. Hopefully those issues will get rectified in future updates.
The Apple TV app is currently available on Apple TV devices, most 2019 and select 2018 model Samsung Smart TVs, Roku devices, and Roku TVs, and coming soon to LG smart TVs, smart TVs running Amazon’s Fire OS (aka Fire TVs), and Amazon Fire TV devices.
**UPDATE (10/16/2019 12:05PM Pacific)** Per Apple Support agent Bryce, Dolby Atmos and access to Special Features are coming in a future, unspecified update to the app.