Saturday, December 13, 2014

Roku UK Channel Store - Weekly RoundUp #92

Hi, everyone !!

With all the seasonal changes that go on around us at this time of year, it's (perhaps) of no surprise that there have also been one or two changes of scenery within the background images on our favourite streaming media player(s) of late. For those with (relatively) short memories... the fun began with a "Hallowe'en" theme at the end of October, closely followed by an "Autumn" (i.e. "Fall", for the benefit of our Trans-Atlantic cousins) theme during the Thanksgiving period. Following on from that, pretty much everyone that owns a Roku player, no matter which "region" they're in, will (more than likely) have witnessed another change in backdrop (i.e. "theme") on the Home Screen of their streaming media player(s) during the past 24 hours, or so. If you're a big fan of Winter, or (perhaps) you're one of those people (like me) who's forever dreaming of a 'White Christmas', then you will no doubt have welcomed the change to a more "seasonal" (if somewhat idealistic/minimalist) look. However, there will be others who were less appreciative of the enforced change of scenery thrust upon their television screen(s) as a result of yet another back-door "update", ahem !! Anyway... if you didn't like the new theme, and haven't already discovered for yourself, it's very easy to switch back to your previous theme (or select another, from the choices available) via the 'Settings' menu on your Roku. All you need do is navigate to "Settings > Themes > My themes" from the Home Screen & highlight your choice of "theme". This gives you a thumbnail screenshot of what you can expect as your backdrop (if selected) and it's then just a matter of pressing the "OK" button to confirm your choice and save the change.

If, in future, you'd rather not take advantage of (or, be subjected to) these seasonal themes, then you can SIMPLY SWITCH THEM OFF, which is (again) easily achieved VIA THE CUSTOM SETTINGS in your Roku 'Settings' menu. Simply navigate to "Settings > Themes > Custom settings", from the Home Screen of your Roku, and you will see the option to have "Seasonal themes: On", or else "Seasonal themes: Off". It's then just a matter of deciding what's best for you and highlighting your choice before pressing the "OK" button to confirm it and save the change. Those choosing to leave "Seasonal themes: On" will find that their Roku player(s) will automatically switch to a "Seasonal theme" whenever one is available, and then automatically switch back to their previous choice of "Theme" when it expires. Anyone opting for "Seasonal themes: Off" will find that their Roku player(s) DOES NOT automatically switch to a "Seasonal theme", BUT... for the period of time that a "Seasonal theme" IS AVAILABLE, you can still switch to it (manually) as and when you like. In other words, IF YOU DO NOT WANT to have your Roku switch to a "Seasonal theme", without your actively choosing to do so, then all you need do is deactivate SEASONAL THEMES by choosing "Seasonal themes: Off", which will leave your Roku player "Theme" set just as you like it, with no danger of any unexpected changes in the future, unless you choose otherwise !!

Personally I like the (slight) "surprise" element of these "Seasonal themes" which can often appear for just a day, or sometimes (perhaps) for a weekend, and (occasionally) for a whole week or even longer, and I was (again) thrilled to discover the 'Winter' theme on my Roku this morning. So (unsurprisingly) I (for one) will be leaving my "Seasonal themes On" for the foreseeable future to see what excitement lies in store as the days, weeks, months and years unfold. If it's not too late to develop one, maybe the folks at Roku could give us some "Fireworks" by way of a new "theme" for seeing-in the new year?!

Aside from the above "gift" of a new 'Winter' theme for their streaming media players, there was also the matter of AN EXTRA SURPRISE "GIFT" FOR UK ROKU OWNERS which came courtesy of a special announcement, 'VIA THIS POST', on the "Official" Roku Blog. In case you missed it... I'll give you a clue which will enable you to "put two and two together", as the saying goes, and thereby discover A NEW ROKU CHANNEL that can be used TO GET EVEN MORE PPV CONTENT (i.e. Pay-Per-View Movies & TV) on your streaming media player(s):-





Yes folks, Roku owners in the UK now have even more movie-viewing options, with the opportunity to "watch thousands of hours of the very best movies and TV", including "the latest blockbuster films" courtesy of the NEW "Sainsbury's Entertainment" CHANNEL which can be enjoyed by all UK Roku owners, entirely SUBSCRIPTION-FREE, as of now. You have the opportunity to "buy" or "rent" in both SD and HD formats, with the ADDITIONAL BENEFIT OF "UltraViolet" COPIES included with many (though not all) of the titles available to buy. You can read more about the benefits of linking an UltraViolet (UV) account to your "Sainsbury's Entertainment" library via a dedicated help article, FOUND HERE, in the 'FAQ' section of their website. Rentals on the other hand are, generally speaking, offered with a 48-hour viewing "window" which begins from the moment you first press "play" on a rented title. BE ADVISED: If you fail to complete your viewing of a rented title within the 48-hour period, and then attempt to continue watching beyond that time limit, you will receive a "license error" meaning that you will need to re-rent the same title in order to make another attempt at viewing it in it's entirety. That said, you can keep an unwatched rental in your library for upto 30 days. The viewing window "clock" does not start until the first time you begin playback of the content. There's even more GOOD NEWS FOR REGISTERED NECTAR CARD USERS in that all of your purchases made through "Sainsbury's Entertainment" will accrue more "Nectar Points" on your account (regardless of whether you "buy" or "rent" any given title). Other useful features include the ability to stream FREE TRAILERS for much (though not all) of the content and the option for you to utilise the BUILT-IN PARENTAL CONTROLS with added PIN PROTECTION to safeguard younger family members from viewing something inappropriate for their age, in accordance with BBFC ratings. On top of all that, there's a range of associated apps for mobile devices (see links in channel listings below) that will enable you to start watching on one device and continue on another for the greatest flexibility with your viewing. This means that (ultimately) you can "watch what you want, where you want, when you want" and that's about all anyone could want, when it comes to streaming media !! For further details, on the "Sainsbury's Entertainment" channel, I recommend that you read the "Official" announcement from Roku (see link above) as well as the additional information included within the individual channel listing for "Sainsbury's Entertainment" which you will find later in this post.

Also worth noting is that, as with the "Google Play Music & TV" channel (released six weeks ago), the "Sainsbury's Entertainment" channel (or, "app", if you prefer) has been added to the Roku UK channel line-up despite being in direct competition with 'Sky Store' in the pay-per-view (PPV) arena. Once more, this begs the question as to why 'Blinkbox' and/or 'Amazon' have yet to add their own Roku channel in the UK?! Moreover, the fact  both "Sainsbury's Entertainment" and "Google Play Music & TV" have now been added to the Roku channel selection in the UK must (surely) end any/all speculation about Sky/NowTV blocking their rivals from adding a channel to Roku players in the UK?! So, what is the hold-up with 'Amazon' and 'Blinkbox'? Okay, the launch of 'Fire TV' may explain the reluctance of Amazon to add their (already developed) Roku channel for the UK market (at least for now) but what excuse can 'Blinkbox' put forward for their continued absence from the platform?! Like I said before... with Netflix, NowTV, Sky Store, plus Google (and now Sainsbury's Entertainment) onboard, not forgetting an entire suite of UK CatchUpTV channels, it's not like they'd be sailing into uncharted waters (so-to-speak) and Roku would be A NEW REVENUE STREAM FOR BLINKBOX whose parent company Tesco are currently in talks with Vodafone regarding the sale of their PPV movie streaming service. So, assuming they do go ahead with the buyout, let's hope Vodafone UK (or whoever ends up running 'Blinkbox' in the future) wake up & smell the coffee... LET'S GET BLINKBOX ON UK ROKU PLAYERS TOO!

Anyway, before I proceed any further with this 'Weekly RoundUp'... a brief reminder that, whilst I had hoped I'd be able to catch-up on the missing Roku-related news from this blog in the coming weeks, with all the extra work I've been burdened with of late it remains unlikely that I'll be fully caught-up anytime soon. Until I do find the time... my one saving grace is that (as mentioned previously) I have somehow managed to remain up-to-date with all the latest additions to the "New" category of the "Official" Roku UK Channel Store and will endeavour to flesh-out what's missing ASAP! Admittedly, there are quite a few articles that I need to catch up on but, rather than post links for individual weeks, I'll simply refer you back to my "Roku UK Channel Store - Weekly RoundUp #78", which contains all of the pertinent information you might need when researching back over the items in question. Again, I'm sorry this has dragged-on (far) longer than anticipated, and apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused you in the meantime, but (all being well) things will be back to speed before too long!

For now... all I can offer you (once more) is a brief summary of the latest channel additions to the "Official" Roku UK Channel Store from the past seven days. As with my other recent posts, you can expect any additional Roku-related news from the past week, along with details of any changes to the channel selection found on NowTV Boxes, to be added at some point in the near future. As for "mending" all of the "broken" links from previous 'Weekly RoundUp' posts, I still can't put a time-scale on how long that is going to take but (like I said before) if you "copy" the existing link(s) and change the "http" prefix to "https", as well as removing the "forward slash" between 'channels' and '#!details', so that "channels#/!details" becomes "channels#!details" in each weblink, you should find that they will all work for you and redirect to the new-look version of each individual channel description. As with the last five 'Weekly RoundUp' posts, every link from this week (as well as all future posts) will make use of the new format, so it's only those from 'Weekly RoundUp #1' up as far as 'Weekly RoundUp #86' which you'll have to amend... at least, until I can edit/repair the links for you !!

Still, with all the "missing" Roku-related news (and links) yet to follow, let's now press on with the current 'Weekly RoundUp' of NEW ADDITIONS to the "Official" Roku UK Channel Store. This time, there are TWENTY NEW CHANNELS which have been added during the past seven days. These latest additions to the channel line-up provided FRESH CONTENT in each of the Film & TV, Games, News, Weather, Sport, Internet TV, Food, Special Interest, plus Religion & Spirituality genres (i.e. categories). Specifically, this means there's been EIGHT EXTRA CHANNELS in the "Special Interest" genre, as well as THREE EXTRA CHANNELS in each of the "Film & TV" plus  "News, Weather, Sport" categories, plus TWO EXTRA CHANNELS in each of the "Internet TV" and "Food" genres, not forgetting the ONE EXTRA CHANNEL in both "Games" and "Religion & Spirituality" categories, among the selection of new channels added to the channel store on all Roku streaming devices in the UK during the last week. 

In keeping with previous installments from the 'Weekly RoundUp' series, details of these new channels have been listed below, together with links to obtain further information {by clicking on the channel name(s) beneath the respective channel icon(s) as pictured} and to read a 'Roku Guide' review (where available) with an independent (slightly more expansive) assessment of each one:-

HBN TV...............................................................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]

THE POTTERY CHANNEL..................................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]

STRUCTURE FISHING SHOW............................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]

THE HOMESTEAD CHANNEL...........................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]

GREEN SMOOTHIE HABIT.................................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]

LEARNING SONGS...............................................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]

RHYME TIME.........................................................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]

TELL ME WHY......................................................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]

KRAVINGS BLOG.................................................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]

ENDEMOL BEYOND............................................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]

BEYOND COMEDY..............................................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]

PANIC ATTACK VIDEOS....................................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]

KINDA FUNNY......................................................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]

WASSABI............................................................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]


PLEASE NOTE:- That, as the "Sainsbury's Entertainment" channel does not (currently) feature in the Roku (USA) Channel Store, the link above is for the "Official" Website of Sainsbury's Entertainment. If you visit the site, you'll see there's a large selection of cloud-based Pay-Per-View (PPV) Movies & TV Shows for you to choose from. These are all available to users of the "Sainsbury's Entertainment" channel for Roku streaming media devices in the UK, as well as via the "Sainsbury's Entertainment" app(s) for mobile devices whenever you're "on the go". There are FREE DOWNLOADS available for all of the "Sainsbury's Entertainment" apps on various mobile platforms, AS FOLLOWS:-

DOWNLOAD FREE iOS APP:- Sainsbury's Entertainment (from Apple iTunes Store)


DOWNLOAD FREE Android APP:- Sainsbury's Entertainment (from Google Play Store)


DOWNLOAD FREE Windows 8.1 APP:- Sainsbury's Entertainment (from Windows Store)

It's worth visiting the "Sainsbury's Entertainment" website on a regular basis, if only to check out what is on offer as the "Deal of the Day", as there are plenty of PPV bargains to be had whether you are looking to "buy" or "rent" from the selection of available titles. Another regular feature is the constantly evolving range of titles to rent for only £1.99 which can be easily browsed, VIA THIS LINK, on the website. That said, BEFORE YOU CAN WATCH ANY OF THE CONTENT that is available via the "Sainsbury's Entertainment" channel for UK Roku players, or the associated app(s) for mobile devices, YOU MUST FIRST REGISTER FOR AN "Sainsbury's Entertainment" ACCOUNT online. To make it easier for UK Roku users to sign-up, I'm including a DIRECT LINK to the relevant page on the website, FOUND HERE, where you can register.

Meanwhile, if you'd like assistance when installing & using the "Sainsbury's Entertainment" channel on UK Roku device(s) there is a useful HELP ARTICLE available, VIA THIS LINK, which should provide you with sufficient information to get you started. Should you have any further questions... there is always their CONTACT FORM, FOUND HERE, for online communication purposes. Or, if you prefer, there is also a FREEPHONE NUMBER (in the UK) FOR SUPPORT:- 0800 328 1700 which might prove to be a better/faster option for you - HINT: Hours of operation for the "zen desk" are from 8am-8pm (Mon-Fri) and from 9am-5pm on Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays. If you try and call outside of peak periods, you should be assured of someone being available to help you.

Of course, you may choose (instead) to connect with them via their Twitter Feed: @Sainsburys or, if you just want to get social with them, you can do so via their Facebook Page: Sainsbury's (Facebook). Just be sure to tell 'em that @ukrokuchannels sent you, if you do decide to get in touch with them !!

ALSO:- Most likely down to the fact that the "Sainsbury's Entertainment" channel has not yet been added to the "Official" Roku USA Channel Store, there is (currently) no active link to a 'Roku Guide' review available. If, at some time in the future, this situation changes, I will add the link to this post. Meanwhile... hopefully the details (and links) provided in this post will contain sufficient information to give you a good idea what to expect from the channel, should you decide to use it on your Roku.

PHILLY CAM......................................................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]

ONE AMERICA NEWS NETWORK.............COST: £2.99 (MONTHLY) [Roku Guide Review]

AWE..............................................................COST: £1.99 (MONTHLY) [Roku Guide Review]

POPPIN CA$INO............................COST: £1.49 (ONE-OFF PAYMENT) [Roku Guide Review]

FINANCIAL TIMES...............................................................COST: FREE [Roku Guide Review]


Anyhow, like it or not, that is your lot for this week and, whilst it doesn't quite match-up to the twenty-three channels which made it into the "Official" Roku USA Channel Store during the same time-frame, I always think it's better to have SOME NEW CHOICES than none at all, don't you ?!!

Meanwhile... hopefully everyone in the UK with a Roku player managed to find something they like within the twenty channels outlined above. If not, then you'll just have to pay us a visit another time when, with any luck, there will be something more to your liking. Afterall, there's no point installing every channel because, as I've said before, when it comes to adding new channels to your Roku player, IT'S YOUR CHOICE and, as with all things Roku... THE CHOICE IS ALWAYS YOURS !!


As mentioned earlier in this post, you can expect my usual summary of all the goings-on (or not) in the (severely restricted) Roku Channel Store that features on NowTV Boxes to follow in the near future. Meanwhile, whether you happen to own a Roku player, a NowTV Box, OR BOTH, as I do... be sure to check my previous posts (as mentioned above) for all the new additions to the "Official" Roku UK Channel Store in each of the nineteen preceding weeks and then come back again in seven days' time for my next 'Weekly RoundUp'. However, if you can't wait that long, remember you can always keep up with all the UK Roku action (as it happens) throughout the coming week, by following the companion Twitter Feed: @ukrokuchannels where up-to-the-minute info on all things Roku-related (here in the UK) is posted on a daily basis (well, almost).

Until the next time, then...

That's all folks !!


  1. Is uktvplay supposed to be on Roku? The uktv website claim it is on NowTV, which by that I presumed they meant NowTV boxes as it is not part of their subscription deal - but if it were on NowTV boxes surely it would also appear on Roku. I don't have a NowTV box to check, but it is definitely not on my Roku XS.

    1. Hi, "ChalkTalk" !!

      First of all, thanks for taking the time & trouble to leave a comment.

      It's much appreciated.

      To answer your question... in a word, "No" - or, at least, not as of this moment. However, that's not to say it won't become available on Roku devices and/or NowTV Boxes or (perhaps) even Amazon's Fire TV at some point in the future !!

      Since you mentioned not having a NowTV Box to check for a "UKTV Play" channel yourself, to be absolutely certain, I did make a point of checking the 'NowTV' channel on both 'Roku 2 XS' and 'Roku 3' models as well as on the NowTV Box itself. Additionally, I took a look at the entire range of channels (or, "apps", if you prefer) that feature in the (severely restricted) Roku Channel Store on the NowTV Box. This I did, to make sure that a new 'UKTV Play' channel had not been added to the streaming media player from NowTV whilst, as with the 'Sky Sports News HQ' channel, NOT being featured in the "Official" Roku Channel Store on UK Roku models. After much research, I came to the conclusion that (for now, at least) there is no 'UKTV Play' channel for the NowTV Box, the 'NowTV' channel, or on Roku players in UK.



    2. /CONTINUED...

      I'm not sure which part of the UKTV website you were referencing when you said that they, "...claim it is on NowTV", because there was no specific link provided in your original comment. That said... I did find something on the UKTV Play website ( which mentioned, "plenty of on demand content from UKTV is also available on BT, Sky, Virgin Media, Talk Talk and Now TV", so perhaps that is from where the confusion arises?! If so, I should (perhaps) point out that on demand content from UKTV could mean anything from their entire suite of channels, which includes the following:-

      01. Watch
      02. Dave
      03. Alibi
      04. Gold
      05. Eden
      06. Drama
      07. Really
      08. Good Food
      09. Yesterday
      10. Home

      Given that the "Entertainment Month Pass" from NowTV already features 'Gold' among the thirteen channels that it offers, it's my belief that this is why the UKTV Play website mentions NowTV as a source of "on demand content from UKTV" and not (unless you've seen it elsewhere) intending to suggest that 'UKTV Play' is available via the 'NowTV" channel or on NowTV Boxes as per your original query.

      As it stands, there are (currently) only three channels from UKTV's suite of channels whose content has been made available via 'UKTV Play' anyway. For the record, they are:-

      01. Dave
      02. Really
      03. Yesterday

      Whilst this is somewhat disappointing, given the range of additional channels (not to mention content) in the UKTV stable, it's important to remember that this is still a fledgling on-demand service and should improve with time. To wit, once it does (hopefully) put in an appearance on Roku devices and/or NowTV Boxes, I'd like to think it will offer a lot more than it does right now.


    3. /CONTINUED...

      Meanwhile, anyone interested in accessing 'UKTV Play' can do so online via their official website (see link above) as well as the iOS app which was used as the launchpad for this service, in July 2014, and can be found here:-

      More recently, there were other official announcements from UKTV stating that 'UKTV Play' would also be available through both 'Virgin Media' and 'YouView', the latter of which can be viewed at:-

      There has also been mention of apps for Android mobile devices (both phones AND tablets) coming in the near future which could even see 'UKTV Play' added to Amazon's Fire TV which is based on that platform. However, despite no clear indication that it is on the horizon, the fact UKTV already has established partnerships with both Sky AND NowTV suggests that "channels" or "apps", as some people refer to them, for NowTV / Roku devices could well go into development sooner rather than later !!

      Let's just hope that, if and (hopefully) when they do arrive, they receive higher critical acclaim than the present incarnation for PC & YouView:-

      Lastly, if any Roku / NowTV Box owners in the UK would like to get in touch with UKTV and express their interest in having 'UKTV Play', or any other UKTV channel for that matter, featured in the Roku Channel Store... you have the following options by which to do so:-

      UKTV Viewer Enquiries
      Tel: 08457 344 355
      Post: UKTV Viewer Liaison, UKTV, PO Box 4307, Manchester M61 OAH
      For any recruitment queries, please email
      For all programme submissions, please submit to
      You can write directly to UKTV at the following address;
      10 Hammersmith Grove
      London W6 7AP

      Or, if you would prefer, there's also an online CONTACT FORM for you to use which can be easily accessed if you copy & paste the following link into your web browser:-

      A bit long-winded, I know, but (hopefully) that answers your question to a greater or lesser extent?! If not, please feel free to leave an additional comment below and I'll see what I can do to assist you further.

      Thanks for reading the blog!