Can Roku Connect To Hotspots: Answer Explained!

Who doesn’t have at least six streaming service subscriptions that they pay for and watch on at least a semi-regular basis? I know I do. 

Roku puts them all into one place, and it comes on most smart TVs being made these days.

Connecting your Roku and streaming from your favorite service is easier than ever before, whether you are using Hulu, Netflix, Discovery+, Disney+, or a free app like Tubi or Pluto.

But, for those of you who are newer to Roku, connecting to your home’s WIFI or through your cell phone’s data might be a bit confusing. 

Just how do you connect Roku to your mobile hotspot – and can you?

Can Roku Connect To Hotspot: Answer Explained!

It is possible for you to connect your Roku to your hotspot. If your phone’s hotspot is already activated, you will need to go into Roku, then connect to your hotspot by looking for its name under ‘WIFI’. 

Roku hotspot can be problematic, though, when there is a limited power supply, leading to you needing to try some troubleshooting techniques to rectify the issue.

Roku is a handy thing to have since it lets you keep all of your streaming services in one place.

You can simply scroll through and find the channel that you want to watch.

If you don’t have it built into your smart TV, then you will likely be using Roku connected to your TV via an HDMI port. 

Whether you have the regular Roku, the smaller Roku Streaming Stick, or Roku just built into your smart TV, it tends to work about the same.

As long as you have a WIFI connection or cell phone data available, then you can connect your Roku and watch whatever you fancy.

It is entirely possible for you to connect your Roku to your hotspot, but that is going to depend on a few things. 

Allow me to explain what I learned when I had to rely on hotspot for a few days.

How does a hotspot work?

A hotspot is basically a WIFI connection. 

You can use your home’s WIFI as a hotspot or your cellphone, given that your service provider allows this. 

Given that a Roku can connect to a regular WIFI connection, it should be able to connect to a hotspot in the exact same way.

If you decide to use your cellphone as a hotspot, you need to make sure your contract allows for this.

Some contracts actually prohibit this type of use, so it is best to know for sure before you make the attempt.

Hotspots require a lot of battery power, so a cellphone battery will get drained pretty quickly unless you leave it plugged in on the charger.

How do you monitor data usage?

Unfortunately, using Roku with your hotspot will consume a ton of mobile data – a few GB an hour, actually. 

You can even use 600 MB per hour just streaming video in standard definition.

This is a problem if you do not have an unlimited data plan, since your data could easily be gone after viewing one or two movies.

If you have unlimited data, you should still check the terms given by your service provider. 

The truth is, some companies will limit your speed if you consume a certain amount of data per day.

This, of course, can cause problems with streaming on Roku.

You can keep an eye on your data usage. 

There are apps for that, for both Androids and iPhones. 

Not only can these apps monitor your data usage, they can also set the max amount of data the hotspot is allowed to use.

Once you hit that data cap, your hotspot will shut off. 

You’ll have to sift through the apps in either the Google Play Store or Apple App Store and find the one that you like the most.

Can you control your Roku’s connection speed?

Worried about burning through your data? You can turn down the connection speed on your Roku. 

While this does lower the video quality, it will reduce some of that data usage.

It just isn’t all that easy to control your connection speed

You will actually have to follow a special sequence in order to do this:

  1. Press the home button on your remote control five times. 
  2. Press the rewind button three times.
  3. Press the forward button twice.

Next, a menu will appear on your screen. This will allow you to turn down the connection speed.

The lower you set it, the less data the Roku will use. 

Of course, doing this lowers the video quality and might result in pauses while buffering.

Can you use hotspot with multiple Roku devices?

You can use hotspot with multiple Roku devices. 

However, this is something I would not advise you do if you are using your smartphone as a mobile hotspot. 

This will burn through your data like nobody’s business, and you’ll end up with a super sluggish connection on your phone.

If you are using your home’s WIFI as a hotspot, then you shouldn’t have too many problems connecting multiple Roku devices to it and running them simultaneously.

How do you connect Roku to a hotspot?

Okay, so just how do you connect your Roku to a hotspot?

You will need to begin by turning on your phone’s hotspot or your home WIFI’s hotspot. 

How you do this on your phone will depend on the type of phone you are using, not to mention the version of the operating system running on your phone. 

You can search Google for instructions on how to turn on hotspot for your particular phone model.

Once it is on, here is what you need to do to connect Roku to the hotspot:

  1. Press the Home button on your Roku remote control.
  2. Select Settings.
  3. Choose Network.
  4. Select Set-Up Connection.
  5. Select Wireless.
  6. Wait until the name of your hotspot appears on the screen.
  7. Next, select your network’s name.
  8. Enter your network password. 
  9. Allow Roku to verify the connection.

You will want to turn the hotspot off whenever you are not using it, otherwise it will consume even more of your data. 

Just turning it off on your phone should do the trick. 

Sure, the Roku likely will not use data when you are not streaming, but it could use up data to download updates while not in use.

Closing Thoughts

Roku can easily be connected to a hotspot. 

But beware, it can easily sap you of your data. 

Even if you have unlimited data, you can still get hit with slower connection speeds if you use too much data. 

Only use your hotspot as needed; if you already have WIFI, just connect Roku directly to that.