Chromecast vs. Apple TV vs. Roku – Versatile and user-friendly streaming devices

Are you thinking of transitioning into the online entertainment world? You can do this with the right streaming device. Some of the options you should check out include Chromecast, Apple TV, and Roku.

The three are streaming devices that come from different manufacturers. They are therefore equipped with various features that make them great at entertainment. Choosing any of these streaming devices can help you watch different TV shows and movies every day. Picking one of them is, however, challenging. You have to consider your streaming preferences, budget, and brand loyalty. We put up this guide to help you learn more regarding each model. Enjoy!

What are the differences between Chromecast, Apple TV, and Roku?

Name
Chromecast
Apple TV
Roku
Remote
Absent
Siri remote
Regular remote
Voice control
Present but limited
Present
Absent
Storage
8 GB
32 GB
8GB
Unique features
None
Access to iTunes, Airplay feature
Private listening
Weight
1.4 ounces
14 ounces
1 pound
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Chromecast vs. Apple TV vs. Roku- How do they compare?

Size

The size of a streaming device can determine how portable it is. If you need a travel-friendly streaming player, you should choose a lightweight one. Both Roku and Chromecast are lightweight streamers that you can travel with. They also do not occupy a lot of space. Apple TV is bulky and is, therefore, less portable. In terms of size, Roku and Chromecast are better than Apple TV.

Remote Control

A good streaming device should be easy to control. That is what you should expect from both Apple TV and Roku. This is because both of these streaming devices feature remotes that facilitate ease of use.  You can even use other smart devices to control both of them. Chromecast is a bit limiting since it does not come with a remote. You can only control it through a laptop or phone. This can interfere with streaming, especially when you have to have to answer phone calls. Apple TV and Roku are, therefore, easy to control compared to Chromecast.

Voice control

In this digital era, many people want a hand free streaming experience. They, therefore, choose streaming devices that they can give voice commands. Both Chromecast and Apple TV offer this. You need the Google Assistant speaker to give Chromecast voice commands. On the other hand, Apple TV comes with a Siri voice remote. Unfortunately, you cannot provide Roku streaming device voice commands. Apple TV is better than both Chromecast and Apple TV since it has enhanced voice control capabilities.

Chromecast vs. Apple TV vs. Roku -A comparison overview

Chromecast

Apple tv vs. Chromecast

Get a chance to cast all your favorite content from your small screen phone to your smart TV through this streaming device. Chromecast is a quality streamer that you have to connect to your TV through the HDMI port. Once you have completed the connection, you can simply open the Netflix app on your smartphone, pick the show you like watching and use the cast icon to display it directly on your smart TV.

This portable device does not need a lot of space and is not cumbersome. Bring it along with you when you change destinations to follow up on your favorite series. Unlike other streaming devices, Chromecast lacks a physical remote. You, therefore, have to rely on your laptop or phone to control it. You can use it to access different apps and integrate them with your smart home. Most people also like this streaming player since it provides voice control.

Pros

  • It is portable and lightweight
  • Affordable
  • It allows you to cast HDR and 4K content

Cons

  • No remote

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Chromecast specs

Casting feature
Available
Channels
Netflix, Pandora, Amazon prime video, Hulu, Tidal, Spotify, Twitch.
YouTube TV
Included
4K and HDR functionality
Yes
Resolution
1080P

Apple TV

Apple TV

If you have invested in the Apple eco-system, you should focus on the Apple TV streamer. This comes as a set-top box that can easily plug into your smart TV through an HDMI cord. It can help you access more content since it allows you to browse through thousands of apps. Unlike Chromecast, Apple TV gives you different options for controlling it. For instance, you can use the remote included in the packaging or an iPad or iPhone to control it.

Some of the apps that you should expect as you use this streaming device include iTunes, Disney+, Netflix, Hulu, and Prime Video. Apple TV also allows you to play all kinds of games, music, and even control other smart home features easily. Due to the extra weight included in this streaming device, it is not travel-friendly. Despite this limitation, the size enables it to have additional features such as storage space for local content.

Many people choose this streaming device due to its impressive hardware. It is capable of handling HDR, 60fps 4K content, and Dolby Atmos. You will also like the smooth interface of Apple TV, which is designed to deliver a polished experience to users. Though this streaming device is well equipped, its high price discourages some potential buyers.

Pros

  • Clean interface
  • Gives you access to iTunes
  • You can use a remote or iPad to control it
  • Has an Ethernet port built-in
  • Adequate storage space
  • Offers numerous app store apps

Cons

  • It is expensive

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Apple TV Specs

Operating system
Apple tvOS
Channels
Showtime, Pantaya, Netflix, Hulu, Stars, Shudder
YouTube TV
Included
4K and HDR functionality
Yes

Roku

Roku Ultra | 4K/HDR/HD Streaming Player with Enhanced Remote (Voice, Remote Finder, Headphone Jack, TV Power and Volume), Ethernet, Micro SD and USB (2017)
  • 2,000+ entertainment channels choose from the widest variety of streaming entertainment, including...
  • Stunning HD video quality immerse yourself in the action with rich, vibrant video streaming up to 1080p...

Roku is one of the companies that offer you a choice when it comes to streaming players. It produces different streaming devices that you can pick from. You can either choose the small box or rectangular stick-based streamer from this company. Regardless of the one you prefer, the set-up remains the same. You have to plug in the Roku streaming device into the HDMI port of your television. The package includes a remote that can help you with the basics.

Many people choose to work with this streaming device since it gives one access to thousands of apps at an affordable cost. It also has features that are hard to find in other streaming devices, such as private listening. This allows you to stream audio to headphones so that you don’t keep on disturbing others, especially when you choose late-night viewing. You can find advanced Roku models that feature a headphone jack.

Pros

  • Different varieties to pick from
  • Includes private listening
  • Cheap
  • Gives you access to lots of content
  • The search feature is excellent

Cons

  • It lacks an extender cable.

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Roku Specs

YouTube TV
Yes
Channels
Hulu, Netflix, Google Play, PBS, the Roku channel
Remote
Advanced
Dolby Vision
No
HDR and 4K functionality
Included

Conclusion

Before you buy a streaming device, you should think about the specific products you have at home to get a device that can complement them. Chromecast, Apple TV, and Roku are marketed to people with different needs since they have a lot of differences.

Verdict: So, Which is better? Chromecast, Apple TV, or Roku

After comparing these three streaming devices, we discovered that Apple TV has more capabilities and features than Chromecast and Roku. Roku also impressed us due to its simple interface, unique features, and low price. The lack of voice control in this model was, however, a deal-breaker. Chromecast was not very impressive since it lacks a remote, has limited voice control, and does not contain some unique features. This made us choose Apple TV as the clear winner.

FAQs

Can I access YouTube TV through Chromecast?

Yes. This is available from the streamer.

What is the function of the Airplay feature on Apple TV?

This can help you view images from your iPhone to the TV.

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