Android TV and Google TV make it simple for users to enjoy streaming services and find all of their favorite content. These systems are available on a wide range of devices, including smart TVs, dongles, and set-top boxes, too. If you’re not sure which device is right for you, this list will cover all of the best Android TV devices and Google TV devices money can buy.
Android TV Versus Google TV
Before we take a look at the top Android and Google TV devices for 2022, let’s first look at what Android TV and Google TV actually are. You may be familiar with Android TV, which has been around since its launch in 2014. Developed by Google and based on the Android OS, Android TV is a smart TV operating system. It allows users to access different streaming apps to watch films, TV, and more.
So what is Google TV? Well, it’s basically the same thing as Android TV, but with a new name and a fresh look. Towards the end of 2020, Google made the decision to re-brand Android TV as Google TV. Google TV retains many of the same features that made Android TV great. However, it also introduces a host of new elements designed to enhance and improve the user experience.
Google TV brings with it the following features:
- A new and improved user interface focused on content
- Personalized show, film, and other content recommendations for each user
- The ability to watch live streaming services via a new Live tab
- Multiple user accounts with tailored recommendations for each one
- Advanced mobile controls for simpler searching and navigation
Streaming Sticks and Boxes
One of the best ways to benefit from Android TV or Google TV is through the use of a streaming stick or set-top box. You can attach this box directly to your TV and use the Android TV or Google TV OS to browse and stream content. Here are some of the best sticks and boxes available with Android and/or Google TV.
NVIDIA Shield TV
The NVIDIA Shield TV is one of the most popular Android TV devices available. It’s also one of the most powerful, created by one of the world’s leading manufacturers of graphics processing units (GPUs).
The NVIDIA Shield has the processing power and technical specs needed to let you browse comfortably and enjoy the excellent performance when streaming any kind of content.
In addition, the Shield is also a microconsole, able to download and play video games or even stream games from a connected PC.
NVIDIA Shield TV Pro
If you love the NVIDIA Shield TV, you’ll adore the Shield TV Pro. It does everything the original Shield does, and more, with even greater processing power under the hood.
With this device, you can watch all of your favorite content via Android TV without any performance issues. From Disney+ family movies to HBO MAX dramas, everything runs smoothly.
Plus, just like the original Shield TV, the Pro works great for gaming and has even more internal storage to store the latest games.
Xiaomi Mi Box S
Those who are looking for an affordable, budget-friendly Android TV device can definitely find a lot to love about the Xiaomi Mi Box S.
This small set top box doesn’t boast the same levels of technical specifications as the NVIDIA Shield, but it’s still perfectly capable of 4K streaming and high-quality performance.
As stated, it’s also very cheap. So it’s a good way for people to test out Android TV and see what it has to offer before perhaps upgrading to a more powerful device later on.
Chromecast with Google TV
Chromecast digital media players have been around since 2013. They take the form of little sticks or dongles that can be connected to the TV to stream HD content.
The latest iteration of Chromecast is Chromecast with Google TV. Released in 2020, this is the most advanced Chromecast so far, with 2GB of RAM, 8GB of storage, and enough processing power to easily handle 4K Ultra HD streaming.
This device is also, for now, one of the only ways to experience Google TV, as many other devices are still running the older versions of Android TV. So, if you want the new interface, mobile controls, and live streaming, Chromecast with Google TV is an excellent option.
Walmart Onn Android TV Box
Part of Walmart’s increasingly expansive and super affordable Onn electronics brand, the Walmart Onn Android TV Box is another cheap and simple set-top box for Android TV.
As you would expect of a sub-$20 option, this box isn’t super powerful. It can’t handle some of the more advanced features, like 4K HDR. However, it still allows for 4K streaming.
You can use this box to watch all of your usual favorite content on Android TV apps like Hulu, YouTube, and so on. Plus, it’s compatible with Google Assistant for smart home integration and voice controls.
As well as streaming sticks and boxes, Android TV and Google TV can also be found built-in with many of the latest smart televisions from leading brands. Below, we’ll look at some of the top makers of smart TVs available with Android TV and highlight some popular models you may like to consider.
Many of the latest Sony smart TVs, including those in the exclusive Bravia range, feature Android TV integration. The Sony A9G is a beautiful example of this. This OLED screen is available in sizes up to 77″ and offers unparalleled picture quality and speedy Android TV streaming performance.
If you’re looking for more of a budget-friendly smart TV with Android TV, consider Hisense. This Chinese brand produces reliable, good-quality TVs, with many of the latest models, like the H9F Series, coming with Android TV built right in.
Budget-conscious shoppers can also consider a smart TV with Android TV from TCL. TCL produces a lot of cheaper, simpler, smaller TVs compared to other brands. They might not offer the highest resolutions, but they’re ideal for places like bedrooms and guest rooms.
Sharp is another manufacturer that has decided to work with Google to provide Android TV built-in with many of its newest TV models. Models like the Sharp 50DL3KA or 65DL3KA offer beautiful fidelity and enough processing power for speedy searches via the Android TV interface.
You can also shop for Philips branded TV units with Android TV built-in. Models like those in the 5700 series offer enough tech strength to let you search and stream without lag or delay. Plus, Philips is reputed for offering excellent levels of both image and sound quality.