The best media streaming devices available today
While TVs are getting smarter by the day, the selection of streaming services continues to grow.
If you want to be kept up to date, we recommend a dedicated platform that supports new apps with frequent updates. Here are some options to consider:
Google’s Chromecast 4 (2020) includes a standalone remote control with one-touch access to YouTube and Netflix. It runs on Android TV OS and supports up to 4K HDR streaming, HDR+ and Dolby Digital. It connects via an HDMI port and uses a USB-C power cable, effectively turning most TVs into a smart one. All major music and TV streaming services can be downloaded like Netflix, Showmax, Prime Video, Spotify, Apple Music, etc. If you need to connect directly to your networked PC, try the Plex or Kodi apps. Works with Google Assistant.
There are many variants of the Apple TV that can be purchased, such as HD, 4K, 4K second gen and ones with the new 2021 Siri remote. It is best to go for one with a lower storage if you will be streaming content primarily. Apple TVs are great if you want to remain on one ecosystem, with plenty of streaming apps, entertainment and games. It’s an all-in-one solution aimed at families and the 2021 model has 4K, HDR and Dolby Vision support for a true home cinematic experience.
Amazon Fire TV Stick
If you own an Echo smart speaker, get the Amazon Fire TV stick. The latest version supports 4K Ultra HD, HDR and HDR10+ and Dolby Vision. It comes with an Alexa voice remote control and an HDMI extender cable. It is pre-loaded with apps like Prime Video, Netflix, TED, etc and runs on Fire OS, Amazon’s version of Android. It ties in with other smart services like viewing live camera feeds, controlling the lights and streaming music. Not all pre-loaded apps work in South Africa, unless you have access and a VPN.
Mi TV Stick
Xiaomi’s Mi TV Stick is a great budget option with 1080p support that is powered by Android TV 9.0. It has 1GB of RAM, 8GB storage and plugs in via HDMI with Chromecast support, Dolby audio, Bluetooth and dual-band WiFi. It is Google certified with full access to the Play Store with access to the DStv app. You can also cast photos, videos and music from your Android smartphone. The remote has Google Assistant built in, and one-touch access to Netflix and Prime Video.
Roku Express 4K
Another budget option is the Roku Express 4K+ but with streaming quality in HD, 4K and HDR. It also has dual-band WiFi support and supports services like Netflix, HBO Max, Prime Video, Apple TV+ and more. It includes over 150 live TV channels and works with Siri, Alexa and Google Assistant. The remote control has one-touch access to Netflix, Disney+, Apple TV+ and Hulu (you’d need access to these services) and can power your TV with full volume controls. A great alternative solution to DStv with its own free channels.
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