Solving problems with private listening


Private listening is a feature that allows you to listen to the audio from your Roku® streaming player or Roku TV™ through a pair of headphones. This feature is available if you have a remote control with a headphone jack, or through the Roku mobile app.

Private listening is only available through the Roku mobile app on iOS® and Android™ devices.

You can use the Roku device comparison chart to determine which products support private listening.

The headphone icon is not displayed in the Roku mobile app

If you are using the Roku mobile app and you do not see the headphones icon headphone icon on the remote screen, then you may need to install the latest version of the Roku mobile app.

Video stops and starts when activating private listening

If you insert the headphones, or activate private listening on the Roku mobile app, while video is playing then the video will stop and restart as the video is synchronized with the audio in your headphones. To avoid this, insert the headphones and activate private listening before you start streaming the movie or TV show.

Troubleshooting audio problems

The following section describes the steps for troubleshooting any audio problem you might experience with private listening, such as:

  • Audio is out-of-sync
  • Audio stutters and pops
  • Audio is not heard at all

If there is no audio:

  • Check that the remote or mobile device volume is not muted or very low.

If the audio is out of sync:

  • The software will make attempts to auto-correct itself. Wait a few seconds before troubleshooting.

If you are still having problems, try the following steps:

  1. Check the headphones are securely connected by removing and reinserting them.
  2. Check the headphones by using them to play music in another app on your mobile device.
  3. Stop and resume the movie or TV show you are watching.
  4. If you are using the Roku mobile app restart the private listening session by turning private listening off and on again. If this does not work, then close and restart the application:
    • iOS: Double click the home button and swipe the Roku app to close it.
    • Android: Press the Recents button and then swipe the Roku app to close it.
  5. Restart your Roku device by unplugging the power cable and reconnecting.
  6. If possible, try a different set of headphones.

If you are still having problems, it could be your network

Because audio for private listening uses the same wireless network as other devices in your home, it is possible that other devices on the network are impacting the quality of the audio. While using private listening, make sure no other devices on the wireless network are downloading or streaming music or video.

If you are using the remote for private listening, try moving closer to your Roku device, as you may be out-of-range.

If you are still having audio problems, then try the following.

  1. Unplug the power from your Roku device.
  2. Restart your router* by unplugging the power cable from the router, waiting 10 seconds and re-connecting. If possible, check the instructions from your ISP or router vendor as restarting may require that you press a reset button on the device. This will momentarily disconnect your Roku device and your mobile device from the network. Wait for a few minutes while your router re-establishes the internet connection.
  3. Reconnect the power cable to your Roku device.

Pro Tips

  • Check the user manual for the router or contact the router manufacturer to see if your router supports 5GHz. If it is supported, make sure the 5GHz network is enabled, then go to Settings > Network and connect your Roku device to the 5GHz wireless network (e.g., MyNetwork_5GHz). You will also need to connect your mobile device to the same 5GHz wireless network
  • Check the user manual for your router or contact the manufacturer to see if it supports Wi-Fi Multimedia (WMM). Disabling this feature may improve audio performance.
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