Last Updated on December 2, 2019
Tata Sky and other set-top boxes are old news. Media streaming devices are in. They are the greatest thing since sliced bread. Cool? Cool.
Media Streaming devices are basically devices that allow you to watch whatever you want through the internet. You don’t have to go along with the schedule set by channels, you can pick and choose what you want at your own convenience.
If you do not have the time, here are our choices for the Best Media Streaming Device in India:
1. Amazon Fire Stick 4K – The Best Media Streaming Device in India
This market is pretty much taken by Amazon. The Fire Stick is much, much better than the competition at a great price. The Fire Stick 4K can stream video at 4K resolution, has a neat user-interface and plays from almost all streaming services.
Even though Amazon’s own Prime Video service will be promoted on the device, you can use most other streaming services and their apps like Netflix, YouTube Premium, Hotstar etc.
To watch from these services, you will have to subscribe to them. Some services might provide some content for free.
Go for the Amazon Fire Stick 4K if you have a TV that supports 4K resolution, otherwise, it will not be of much use. If you have a TV that can display only HD resolution, then you can go for the regular Fire Stick.
In any case, Amazon’s Fire TV stick provides the best balance in terms of price and features. You get a Bluetooth remote which you can use to operate with. It is easily the best option amongst all of the others.Check price
2. Fire Stick – A cheaper alternative to the Fire Stick 4K
If you have a TV that displays only HD resolution, then it makes sense to buy the regular fire stick. It has all the same features as the 4K version and is available at a lower cost.Check price
3. Google Chromecast 3
Chromecast 3 is a very popular device made by Google. It operates differently than other media streaming devices where here you need to operate and navigate the device through your phone, tablet or laptop.
The device connects to your phone or tablet through bluetooth, so you will always need to have the controlling device in range of the TV.
A neat feature is that you can “cast” whatever it is on your phone on to your TV through the device. So you can use VLC player or Google Play Movies on your phone and the content will show up on your TV.
It works for some people but we prefer the ease and simplicity of the Fire Stick than the Chromecast.Check on Flipkart
4. Apple TV 4K
The only reason you would want to get the Apple TV is that you really are a fan of the Apple ecosystem and do not want to stray from it.
The Apple TV is thrice the cost of the Fire Stick. The only advantage it has over the Fire Stick is the mirroring of your apple devices (iPhone, iPads) on to your screen through AirPlay which is smooth af.
Apple TV has official apps for iTunes Movies, Netflix, Prime Video and YouTube.
It is great design at a great price. We don’t really see any value in this. We would give it a pass unless you are all about Apple.Check price
Buying Guide for Media Streaming Devices in India
Why do you need a Media Streaming Device?
You should buy a media streaming device if:
- If you like watching a wide variety of content from various streaming services like Netflix, Prime, Hotstar or YouTube.
- If you do not like to watch according to a programming schedule by legacy cable channels.
- Watch most movies on demand whenever and you can even pause it or play it however you like.
- If you want to watch your best shows uncensored.
- If you want to watch the latest shows as soon as they are released.
So as you can see, streaming services will be fit for anyone who is busy and wants to live on their own terms.
What do you need for a media streaming device?
- A television with a USB port
- A fast internet connection connected to a WiFi router.
That’s it. That’s all you need.
Do I need a 4K media streaming device?
4K resolution is an upgrade from HD. It is gaining popularity and many streaming services like Netflix have started streaming in 4K (though the plans cost higher).
If you are looking to be future-proof, then it makes sense to go for a 4K device. If you are ok with watching in HD, then do not go for the 4K device.
What is the cost of streaming services in India?
Few of the popular streaming services and their cost:
|Netflix||Basic – Rs. 400/month (1 screen), Standard – Rs. 649/month (2 screens), Premium – Rs. 799/month (4 screens)|
|Hotstar||Rs. 999 per year (1 screen)|
|Amaon Prime Video||Rs. 129/month or Rs. 999/year|
What are the alternatives to the Media Streaming devices?
Well, you can simply just buy a Smart-TV which has all these streaming service apps in-built. In an ideal world, we would have silky smooth user-interface in screens but alas, we have found none yet.
The Fire Stick gives just enough peace of mind to make it worthwhile. It will work on non-smart TVs as well.