Is it time to cut the cord? Let us help you determine the best TV streaming device for your home. It’s convenient to stream services like Netflix and Hulu on a tablet, laptop, or smartphone, but the overall entertainment experience can be greater when viewing the newest Hollywood blockbuster on your TV screen. Before you decide to cut the cable or ditch the satellite, consider the various attributes of the best streaming devices available today.
Best TV Streaming Devices: the Brands
When shopping for the best streaming device you’ll see several familiar name brands. These include Apple, Amazon Fire, Google and Roku. If you’re new to streaming devices, Roku may not be as familiar a name, but the company has been around since 2002 and is considered a leading player in the industry with a founder who is credited for inventing the personal video player.
For any home that already has any Apple devices, the Apple TV streaming device is one of the best options. The fourth generation Apple TV easily allows you to stream content from your favorite apps as well as any previously purchased or rented content from the iTunes Store. Instead of having to store the content on your phone, iPad, or iPod Touch, transfer it from the cloud directly to your TV. The new Apple TV Siri remote responds to voice commands or touch, whichever you prefer to use.
The new Amazon Fire TV streaming device supports 4K Ultra HD so you always enjoy amazing picture quality whether you’re watching a movie, playing a game or binging on an entire season of your favorite TV program. Amazon Fire TV streams Amazon Video as well as Netflix, Hulu, HBO GO, Showtime Anytime and more. You can use it to check local weather, sports scores and play music while entertaining friends. Its media box is slim and sleek.
The Amazon Fire TV Stick is a more compact version of the Fire TV media box. It streams high-definition 1080p video with Dolby Digital Plus surround sound all from a media stick that plugs into any HDMI port. It’s a discreet yet powerful way to stream movies, TV programs, music and games.
Comparable to the Amazon Fire TV Stick, the Google Chromecast streaming device also plugs into any HDMI port on your HD TV. This streaming media player can be controlled with any Android smartphone or tablet as well as with various Apple devices, so a remote is never needed. Enjoy entertainment from Google Play Movies & TV, Google Play Music, Netflix, HBO GO, YouTube, Crackle, Pandora and more. Chromecast pulls your content from the cloud so you don’t have to waste storage space on any of your devices.
The third generation Roku streaming media device offers entertainment from more than 2,000 channels along with an intuitive channel-based interface that makes accessing your favorites quick and easy. The device is small, unobtrusive and includes a built-in headphone port so you can use wireless headphones and not disturb other people in the room by turning up the volume. Like the other streaming devices, it has built-in Wi-Fi but it also includes an Ethernet port and microSD slot for extra storage — great for gamers.
Roku also offers a Roku Stick as well. Similar to the Amazon Fire Stick, it’s compact and a pared down version of the “box” streaming device. The Roku Stick also features 1080p HD streaming and access to all the channels offered with the regular Roku.
When shopping for streaming media devices, it’s important to note that the “stick” versions are less expensive but may not offer as many options or as much versatility as the “box” devices. We have the best streaming devices and we’re available to help answer any questions so you can choose the best for your home.
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