Roku Appears to Have Won Streaming Player Battle This Holiday Season

Every year, one of the most interesting trends is to see which of the popular streaming devices wins Black Friday and the holiday season. It appears at least based on app rankings that this year, Roku is the big winner.

Back in May, Park Associates shared that Roku owned 37% of the OTT device market with Fire TV just behind at 28%. Roku seems to have increased their lead this holiday season, despite Amazon heavily subsidizing devices since Black Friday.

Both companies offered discounted devices, but Amazon has offered their new Fire TV 4K stick for only $35 (normally $50) for the last month. Roku offered their high-end Roku Ultra for just $50 (normally $90) from Black Friday to Cyber Monday. The rest of the holiday season, they’ve been offering $10-$20 across their different streaming players.

According to ranking data from App Intelligence company AppFigures, Roku saw the highest growth in App Rank between December 1st and December 26th.

Roku saw their app ranking rise on iOS from 174 on December 1st to 78 today, while Fire TV saw their app rise from 395 to 261. Roku saw the biggest gains from last year, where they peaked at ~150 around the holidays, as compared to 266 for Fire TV.

Roku and Fire TV both saw their rankings on Google Play pretty stable over the last year. Roku has hovered around 150, while Fire TV around 280.

Other devices may have also seen big gains, but were more difficult to tell from download data. Chromecast which can be set-up from the Google Home app, saw their app rise from 395 to 7 overall, but that app is also heavily used to set-up Google Home smart speakers.

Apple TV is now controlled directly from iOS12, which has made their remote app less popular. Although, their separate app did see a slight bump in app rank this year as compared to last holiday season.