Internet TV boxes are used for live streaming of TV shows, browse the web and acquire catch-up TV facilities. In short, they change your TV into a smart TV. Currently, there are a variety of internet TV boxes. They come from Apple, Roku, and Sky. Android has joined the fray. Due to the availability of different streaming devices, here are some of the factors you should consider before purchasing an Android TV box.
Factors to consider
If your interest is to exclusively use it as a Kodi box, then you have a lot to choose from. However, if you plan on using Netflix or Amazon Prime services then your choice will be limited. Netflix does not have a lot of services streaming 4K and Amazon has a policy that you cannot use their services to stream high-quality video without their hardware. Sounds like a bust, and it is because of the Digital Rights Management which limits content access. Therefore, Android media players require Netflix approval and to acquire Amazon services, Google Widevine Level 1 license for DRM 1080p OR 4K streaming. HBO Now a Microsoft Playready license is required too.
Features to look out for
When purchasing an Android Tv box there are some features that everyone should consider. They are;
1. H.265 hardware decoding.
2. 1080p 3D.
3. HDMI 2.0
4. Android 5.1 or Marshmallow.
5. USB 3.0.
6. New versions of Kodi available.
7. Dual-band Wi-Fi.
To aid in your purchase here are some of the best Android TV boxes available
NVIDIA Shield TV
The NVIDIA Shield Android TV console is one of a kind. It is popular among Kodi lovers. It is all about power and storage. Roku, Fire TV, and others have little in the way of competing with this beast. With top-notch Tegra X1 CPU, RAM of up to 3GB and 256 core graphic processor it is unmatched. The user interface is smooth and it uses Android 6.0 Marshmallow. Its main drawback is that does not support Amazon Prime video and problems with the quality of HD audio working with Kodi.
MINIX NEO U1
It is not on par with the NVIDIA shield but it comes second to non-other. It has the latest S905 chipset, RAM of up to 2GB and 5 core GPU. An additional feature is 16GB of flash storage. Staying true MINIX TV boxes, it has a custom interface for user modification. It can load any app from the Google Play Store. It also includes a customized Kodi version. One of it best services is, it has an amazing support system. It main drawback is that Netflix does not recognize it and therefore HD services are not available.
Apart from the two above, it is also worth mentioning the WeTek Core since its unique as it runs on OpenELEC rather than android 5.1. Also, it supports full HD services of Netflix and HBO.
Clearly, there are several good Android TV boxes. Consequently, selection depends on pricing and quality. It is also important that you consider what your needs are and based on these needs, select the best box for you. After all, the client knows best.