Media streaming devices or players are cool gadgets to have in your home. Company like Google, Amazon, and Roku have some of the best products in the market. The streaming device simply works with any TV (not so smart) with an HDMI port. With its own mobile application, you can then cast your videos, photos, and music to the large screen TV. In this review, we take on Google Chromecast 2, Roku Streaming Stick, and Fire TV Stick. These streaming players are in the same category because they support Full HD video content (1080p). Even your home TV doesn’t subscribe to cable or satellite, you can still watch the best of live TV and sports from AMC, HGTV, ESPN, FOX. The best streaming devices offer you one of the most inexpensive ways to stream hours of content to your TV. That’s what makes these streaming media players so popular. You need a decent WiFi signal in the location you intend to use the TV. It’s essential to have a decent internet connection. There are also some differences in each media player. So read on to learn more about the best streaming media players you should buy.
Full HD 108p streaming devices: great value for money
Google Chromecast 2
The Google Chromecast is a cheap, simple way to stream video content right to your TV from your smartphone or computer laptop. This is the latest generation streaming media device made by Google. The first generation of Chromecast was like a USB dongle. Google Chromecast 2’s performance is noticeably faster. Chromecast 2 is the best gift for Android users.
What’s in the box?
Roku Streaming Stick
What makes Roku streaming devices the best for most users is because Roku the company partners with the content producers. There are more than 500,000+ movies and TV episodes. You’d also enjoy movies, TV original series, kids’ shows, news, sports and more. Watch almost anything across thousands of free or paid channels available in a click. The Stick can pair with Roku’s mobile app to browse and select channels to stream and it should allow for cross-media searches. Installation was as easy as attaching the Stick into TV’s HDMI port. Like the Google Chromecast, the Stick works with a power adapter that needs a wall outlet.
Roku Streaming Stick (3800)
Voice remote with TV power and volume buttons
2 AAA batteries
USB power cable + power adapter
Amazon Fire TV stick
Support over 17,000 apps, games, and Alexa skills including Netflix, Hulu, HBO NOW, YouTube, Amazon Video, NBC, WatchESPN, Disney, and more.
Launch and control content with the included Alexa Voice Remote. One of the most remarkable things about the Amazon Fire TV stick is that it’s priced under $50. And what you get the massive entertainment content and Alexa by Amazon and its growing content partners.
The package itself includes:
– The Fire TV Stick
– The Remote control WITH Alexa voice control
– A Power adapter
– 2 AAA batteries (by Amazon basics)
4K Ultra HD streaming devices: premium players with premium price
Sound familiar? Just like Chromecast Ultra, this Roku streaming player can stream in HD, 4K, and HDR contents. It’s one of the premium products made by Roku, which has a good range of streaming devices. However, unlike the Chromecast Ultra and the Fire TV, you can also play movie on your the Rokue Ultra, which has the built-in USB and microSD ports for additional storage.
Roku Ultra streaming player (4660)
Voice remote with TV power and volume buttons, headphone jack for private listening, gaming buttons and lost remote finder.
Headphones for private listening
Two AA batteries
Google Chromecast Ultra
Google Chromecast Ultra came out after the success of the first generation Chromecast and the Chromecast 2. The difference is that Chromecast Ultra has the capability to stream Stream up to 4K Ultra HD & HDR picture quality movies. This streaming player made by Google is about $30 more expensive than the Chromecast 2. Chromecast Ultra has a built-in Ethernet adapter, which allows you to stream over a wired connection.
What I like:
My smartphone, iPad, and laptop are the remote control. It’s easy to search, browse, queue, star, and more.
What’s in the box?
Power adapter with Ethernet port
Fire TV (All-New 2017)
Amazon All-New Fire TV was released in 2017. Just like the Chromecast Ultra, this streaming device supports 4K Ultra HD at 60 fps. In addition to video streaming, you can also use your Fire TV to view camera feeds, control lights, thermostats, and other compatible smart home devices with your Alexa Voice Remote. This is probably Amazon’s killer feature.
Included in the box:
Fire TV, Alexa Voice Remote, USB cable and power adapter, quick start guide, product guide, 2 AAA batteries