PlayTo Quick Look: The concept: Download the PlayTo app to your Android tablet or smartphone (see warning below), connect to the same WiFi network that your Roku player is on, use your Android device as an intermediary to stream media to your Roku from that device, supported websites, or your home computer (which must also be on the same network).

You can test the app by downloading PlayTo Lite for free, or you can purchase the full version for $4.99. The free version has restrictions that are stated to include rotation of free online channels, number of videos you can stream, and advertisements. However, once I opened the PlayTo Lite app on my smartphone, it installed an icon on my notification bar that could not be closed without rebooting the phone or uninstalling the app. Pulling down the notification bar displays text asking me to support PlayTo by purchasing the full app. I've installed many apps on many phones over the last few years, and I have never had one that installed a permanent nag-notice on my notification bar. Other users on Google Play have had the same complaint, so I can't attribute it to a bug on my phone.

If you still want to try this misbehaving app, go right ahead, but I had no luck getting it to work. I tried several videos from the websites that are listed within the app, but every one resulted in an error box saying that the video could not be played in PlayTo, or that the website is supported only in the paid app. I didn't have any better luck with streaming videos from my home computer. The app found the videos, but the free version will only play from the the first five in the list, and the app doesn't support the format of any of those five.

Maybe the paid version works better, but after my horrible experience with the free version, I'm not betting five bucks to find out.

-- Information is current as of November 16, 2012

Developer's Channel Description: Stream videos from your favorites websites and home servers to your Roku from your Phone or Tablet using our free PlayTo app. Over 100+ websites supported. Also works with most of the popular UPnP or DLNA media server.

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