How to Use Google Play on Roku: Complete Guide in 2021

The Google Play Movies & TV app is no longer available on Roku, as well as some other devices, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still use Google Play on Roku. Read on to find out different ways you can use Google Play on Roku.

Sandra Pattison
By Sandra Pattison (Editor)
— Last Updated: 2021-10-17T16:22:35+00:00

The removal of the Google Play Movies & TV app in June 2021 made an already limited Google Play on Roku experience all the more frustrating. Roku has tons of streaming services and other content available on its channel store, such as Netflix, HBO Max and even some free Roku channels. However, there are some services that have been left out when it comes to dedicated Roku apps. 

Google Play is one of them, and now the Google Play Movies and TV app has been removed too. That doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy it through your Roku, though, and in this article, we’ll show you how to use Google Play on Roku.

Key Takeaways:

  • You can’t install the Google Play Store on Roku, and the Google Play Movies & TV channel was removed from Roku and other devices in June 2021.
  • Users can still access your Google Play Movies & TV content through the YouTube app on Roku.
  • You can use the PhotoView Roku channel to view your Google photos on Roku.
  • If you want to use other Google Play services on Roku, your only option is to mirror your screen.
  • 10/15/2021 Facts checked

    The Google Play Movies & TV app was rebranded as the Google TV app on a number of devices in 2020, but many platforms, such as Roku, were left with the old app. It was completely removed in June 2021, so those platforms have to access the service through the YouTube app. 

  • Yes, you can watch a Google Play Movie on your Roku TV. There’s no dedicated app since it was removed in June 2021, but you can watch your Google Play Movies & TV content via the YouTube app on Roku, or you can mirror your screen to Roku.

  • There are some free movies on Google Play. There’s a “free to watch” section, but they’re not recent releases and often come with ads.

  • No, there isn’t a dedicated Google Play app for Roku, and the Google Play Movies & TV app was removed in June 2021. You can, however, watch your Google Play Movies and TV content through the YouTube app.

  • The Google Play Movies & TV app wasn’t only removed from Roku, it was also removed from other devices such as LG, Samsung and Vizio smart TVs. The Google Play Movies & TV app was rebranded on many devices as Google TV, so Google decided to combine it with the YouTube app on the remaining devices. That means you can still enjoy your Google Play content on Roku.

Getting Google Play on Roku

There are lots of Google services available, but availability is limited on Roku. In fact, there’s no dedicated Google app for Roku. However, you can watch Google Play Movies & TV content through the YouTube app on Roku — which we’ll get into later.

There are a couple of third-party apps available that can help you use other Google services on Roku, too. For instance, you can use the PhotoView app for Google photos, but for any other Google service, you’ll need to mirror your screen to Roku.

There’s also the Movies Anywhere app, which is an online streaming service that allows you to combine all of your purchases from multiple streaming services in one place. It’s free to join and will allow you to watch Google Play content on your Roku. Before you jump in, though, we suggest you read the privacy policy, as it does log some data. 

google play on roku movies anywhere
Movies Anywhere lets you combine all of your streaming purchases in one place.

Can You Get Google Play Store on Roku?

Unfortunately, you can’t get Google Play Store on Roku. Roku has its own operating system, so there’s no framework to include Android-based apps. You can only install apps — or channels — that are made specifically for Roku. You can still mirror your screen, but the only benefit of that is having the content displayed on a larger TV screen.

How to Access Google Play Movies & TV Content Through the YouTube App on Roku

Since Roku doesn’t have a dedicated Google Play Movies & TV channel, you need to use the YouTube Roku app to access Google content. It’s easy to add channels to Roku. Simply follow the steps below.

  1. Press the “Home” Button

    Press the “home” button on your Roku remote to ensure you’re on the home screen.

    roku lineup home
  2. Go to “Streaming Channels”

    Select “streaming channels” from the menu and press “OK” on the remote.

    roku streaming channels
  3. Go to “Search Channels”

    Select “search channels” and press “OK” on the remote.

    roku search channels
  4. Search for “Google Play Movies & TV” and Select the Channel

    Type “YouTube” into the search box until you see it listed on the right-hand side. Then, select the channel and press “OK” on the remote.

    google play on roku search youtube
  5. Go to “Add Channel”

    Select “add channel” and press “OK” on the remote. You’ll then see a message that says the channel has been added — press “OK.”

    google play on roku add channel
  6. Select “Go to Channel”

    Select “go to channel” and press “OK” on the remote.

    google play on roku go to channel
  7. Sign in to Your Google Account on YouTube and Go to “Library,” then “Movies & Shows”

    Sign in to the same Google account that you use for Google Play on YouTube. Then, go to “library” in the left menu and select “movies & TV.” You’ll now see any purchases you have already made. Choosing “movies & TV” from the left menu will allow you to browse for new content.

    google play on roku library

How to Use Google Play Music on Roku

Unfortunately, Google Play Music no longer exists. Google announced back in late 2020 that it would be discontinued, with its services moving to YouTube music

google play music discontinued

There wasn’t a dedicated Google Play Music channel anyway, so you would have had to use screen mirroring to use it through any Roku devices.

How to Access Google Play Photos on Roku

There’s no dedicated Google Play Photos channel on Roku. However, there are two ways that you can view your Google Photos library on Roku: you can mirror your device to Roku, or use a third-party Roku app. Below we’ll show you how to access Google Play Photos using PhotoView on Roku.

  1. Press the “Home” Button

    Press the “home” button to make sure you’re on the home screen.

  2. Go to “Streaming Channels”

    Select “streaming channels” and press “OK” on the remote.

    roku streaming channels
  3. Go to “Search Channels”

    Go to “search channels” and press “OK” on the remote.

    roku search channels
  4. Search for “PhotoView” and Select the Channel

    Type “PhotoView” into the search box until you see it listed on the right-hand side. Select the channel and press “OK” on the remote.

  5. Go to “Add Channel”

    Select “add channel” and press “OK” on the remote. A message will pop up to say that the channel has been added — press “OK.”

    roku google play photos add channel
  6. Select “Go to Channel”

    Select “go to channel” and press “OK” on the remote.

    roku google play photos go to channel
  7. Go to the PhotoView Website and Enter Your Code

    Go to www.photoviewapp.com/link and enter the on-screen code. Then, click “link device.”

    roku google play photos link device
  8. Select Your Google Account and Sign In

    Select the Google account you want to link and sign in.

    roku google play photos sign in
  9. Click “Allow” When Prompted

    Click “allow” to allow PhotoView to access your Google Photos library.

    roku google play photos allow
  10. You’ll See a “Successful” Message on Both Devices

    A “successful” message will be displayed on both devices. Press “OK” on the Roku remote to continue.

    roku google play photos link successful
  11. Browse Your Google Photos Albums

    Select the “Google Photos Albums” icon (selected by default) and press “OK” on the remote to view your Google photos. Use the Roku remote to navigate through different albums.

    roku google play photos browse

Final Thoughts

There are a few ways you can use Google Play with Roku, but with the removal of the Google Play Movies & TV app, you need to take a little detour. To watch Google Play on Roku, you can simply use the YouTube app. Any purchased content will be available there, and you can also browse for new content. 

To view your Google photos, you can use a third-party app called PhotoView, and another app called Movies Anywhere can help you stream all your favorite content from one Roku channel. However, if you want to use any other Google services on Roku, the only option you have is to mirror your screen.

If you’ve found this article helpful, you might like some of our other Roku articles, including the Best VPN for Roku guide, how to cast to Roku guide and our Roku history article. Of course, if you’re looking for more basics, you can also figure out which Roku to buy and our Roku pricing guide.

What’s your experience using Google Play on Roku? Do you think the consolidation of Google Play Movies and TV into the YouTube app was a good idea? Have you had any issues using Google Play through YouTube on Roku? Let us know in the comment section, and as always, thank you for reading.