Getting Started - Setup & How-to

Help getting started with Roku devices, including setup, connecting your device to your TV, linking a Roku device to your account at my.roku.com/link, adding channels, subscribing to services, and more.
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Rianne
Level 7

Using Roku outside the United States

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Hi everyone!

My dad purchased a Roku and brought it back here to the Philippines. I have set it all up but it seems I have very limited options. I was hoping to stream ESPN for live NFL games. Are there any channels you suggest I can get to stream live games? 

Also, it would be great if Roku App would be allowed to work in our country. Had a hard time inputting my Netflix login details. Although up to now, it's just a black screen with the Netflix logo on the upper right corner. Is something wrong with it or this is normal?

Looking forward to your responses. 

Thank you!

-Rianne

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1 Solution

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RokuDanny-R
Roku Employee
Roku Employee

Re: Using Roku outside the United States

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@BillBrehm 

Thanks for the post.

Please be aware that channel availability/access on Roku devices will vary from region to region. A Roku device will work in any location, however, channels may not be available on your device in that location, based on each channel provider's discretion. For more information, you'd want to contact any specific channel/service provider to inquire further about whether they offer their channel/service on the Roku platform in your region. 

In addition, it sounds like you may have created a Roku account that isn't located in your current region. If channels in your region are not available, it may indicate that your device is linked to an account that was created in a different region where that channel may not be offered by the channel provider. You'll want to make sure that you are using an internet connection located in the correct region when creating your account. You can check your IP address' reported location by visiting www.whatismyip.com - If you see an issue, you'll need to contact your ISP to help resolve any issue.

We would recommend creating a new Roku account in your region. For more information about how to create a new account, visit our Support page here: How do I create a Roku® account? Once your new account is set up, try to perform a factory reset on your device and link it to your new account. For more information about how to perform a factory reset, visit our Support page here: How do I factory reset my Roku® streaming device?


Thanks,
Danny

Danny R.
Roku Forum Moderator

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19 REPLIES 19\
RokuDanny-R
Roku Employee
Roku Employee

Re: Using Roku outside the United States

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@Rianne 

Thanks for the inquiry.

Channel availability/access on Roku devices will vary from region to region. A Roku device will work in any location, however, channels may not be available on your device in that location, based on each channel provider's discretion. For more information, you'd want to contact any specific channel/service provider to inquire further about whether they offer their channel/service on the Roku platform in your region. 


Thanks,
Danny

Danny R.
Roku Forum Moderator
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BillBrehm
Level 8

Re: Using Roku outside the United States

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I have a Roku Ultra that I bought in the US and brought home to the Philippines. I am able to get Netflix on it. I do notice that some of the shows that were available on Netflix in the US are not available here.

I set up this Roku while in the US. I don't know if that matters.

I notice on the Roku Channel that a lot of shows I try to play will not play. It tries for a second then goes back to the screen with the play button and there is no message explaining why it doesn't play. I'm guessing it's because I'm not in the US. But I wish it would tell me that and I wish it would not offer shows that it will not allow to play. They could just as easily check my location before they display the list of shows.

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RokuDanny-R
Roku Employee
Roku Employee

Re: Using Roku outside the United States

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@BillBrehm 

Thanks for the post.

Please be aware that channel availability/access on Roku devices will vary from region to region. A Roku device will work in any location, however, channels may not be available on your device in that location, based on each channel provider's discretion. For more information, you'd want to contact any specific channel/service provider to inquire further about whether they offer their channel/service on the Roku platform in your region. 

In addition, it sounds like you may have created a Roku account that isn't located in your current region. If channels in your region are not available, it may indicate that your device is linked to an account that was created in a different region where that channel may not be offered by the channel provider. You'll want to make sure that you are using an internet connection located in the correct region when creating your account. You can check your IP address' reported location by visiting www.whatismyip.com - If you see an issue, you'll need to contact your ISP to help resolve any issue.

We would recommend creating a new Roku account in your region. For more information about how to create a new account, visit our Support page here: How do I create a Roku® account? Once your new account is set up, try to perform a factory reset on your device and link it to your new account. For more information about how to perform a factory reset, visit our Support page here: How do I factory reset my Roku® streaming device?


Thanks,
Danny

Danny R.
Roku Forum Moderator
BillBrehm
Level 8

Re: Using Roku outside the United States

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@RokuDanny-R Thanks for your reply and explanations.

I am aware that content is regional. I will try to make a new account and see how that works. I hope it solves the issues of sowing me content that is not available and then refusing to play it. If that's the case then I would not need to get a message about why the content didn't play. It may take me a few days to find the time, but I will post my results back here.

But even if there is some problem with my account, the Roku channel could solve this issue. If they are looking at my account information to decide what to show me then at my location to decide if they will play what they show, they could improve that algorithm to be more consistent. I am a software engineer myself with 40+ years experience so I am sensitive to these software shortcomings. Also, since they are testing my location and not deciding to play the content, why don't they put up a message to say so? It's one extra step on their part but it would avoid confusion to customers and avoid customers retrying and avoid customers seeking technical support. Could you make this a feature request please?

BillBrehm
Level 8

Re: Using Roku outside the United States

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PS: Specifically the Roku Channel. What are its regional restrictions? I am in the Philippines. I've read that it is only available in the US and Canada but some of it does work outside that region. Are the various content items in that channel individually restricted by region? For example, why can I play My Favorite Martian and Lost in Space but not the Star Trek First Contact movie? Do the various content items have different network speed requirements? It could also be that the old TV shows require less bandwidth and so are able to play but the newer movies need more than I have and so don't play. You can see why a message explaining why a show doesn't play would be helpful. There are at least two possible causes of shows not playing and I don't know which is affecting me. If I upgrade my internet speed would they start to work or will I have wasted my money upgrading?

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Dive-Barb
Level 7

Re: Using Roku outside the United States

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Hey Bill. I’m about to set out of the journey you were on. Did you ever figure out a good solution 

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DBDukes
Community Streaming Expert

Re: Using Roku outside the United States

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@Dive-Barb 

I'm not Bob, but here is some information to consider along with whatever response you may receive. Roku is only sold and supported in 17 regions. This is the full list.

  • United States
  • Canada
  • France
  • Germany
  • United Kingdom
  • Argentina
  • Brazil
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • El Salvador
  • Guatemala
  • Honduras
  • Mexico
  • Nicaragua
  • Panama
  • Peru

That's it. Roku device cannot be purchased through official channels anywhere else. However, Roku devices will work anywhere. But the device working is not the same as any particular app working.

As for app availability, Roku leaves that up to the developer. Netflix, for instance, is available everywhere. That's because Netflix decided to support a Roku app there. Disney+ is not. That's because Disney decided to not support a Roku app outside those 17 regions. That's not to say Disney is available in all 17 of those. I'm simply saying outside those 17, you don't bet Disney on Roku. If Disney makes it available, it will appear in the Channel Store there. But it's Disney's decision. Same for Amazon, and most other services.

You'll find most services do like Disney and Amazon, and not like Netflix. Most will not support an app where the device itself is not supported.

DBDukes
Roku Community Streaming Expert
Note: I am not a Roku employee.

If this post solves your problem please help others find this answer and click "Accept as Solution."

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Dive-Barb
Level 7

Re: Using Roku outside the United States

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Thanks for the prompt response and explanation  . I probably should have further explained my situation and will do so now  

 

I live in US   I have DIRECTV and Xfinity (and ROKU) and have ZERO interest paying any more fees I also have a place in Philippines that going forward I will be spending more time in   I want to replicate as closely as possible as cheaply as possible my channel choices in the Philippines as what I have in US (especially live sports)  Is my best solution ROKU with VPN?  Is that even possible? Is there a better solution?

 

 Thanks in advance 

 

 

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Vakko
Level 9

Re: Using Roku outside the United States

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@Dive-Barb  DirecTV or DirecTV Stream? Either way both only work within the US. You also have Xfinity cable tv or just internet? Either way that is also restricted to within the US. None of this has anything to do with Roku. Whatever you have in the US cannot be used in the Philippines. No way around it. 

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