If it’s going to be the Apple TV 4k versus the Amazon Fire Stick 4k, look, I love almost everything about this product, it is fantastic, it’s just that I also love feeding my kids. So if we’re talking AppleTV vs Amazon Fire, we want to talk about the devices available and the costs for each of them.
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Difference between the fire stick and Apple TV
So, on the Apple TV side, we’ve got the 4k version that retails for about $160 to $170 depending on the retailer. You can get it for $200if you’re foolish enough to shop at apple.com or get it for about $130 or $140 if you want the non 4K version.
On the Amazon side, the Fire Stick 4k that I have right here is about $50, or for $10 less, you can get the non-4k version of that. There’s also the AmazonFire TV Cube, which is $120, and that’s this plus an Echo Dot kind of mashed together.
So you do have those options. So which device should we compare? Intuitively you might want to compare the most expensive options from each since they’re naturally the best, right?
Which, as we just noted, is n’t a comparison at all if you’re talking about price. I mean, $50 for this one versus $160 for this one. All you fast math people out there already figured this out, but that’s more than three times the cost for the Apple device.
It’s unsurprising, maybe considering it’s Apple, but still shocking. But if the price is your only criteria, then problem solved, you can go ahead and shut off this article grab the Amazon one you’re done.
But, the price might not be your only consideration. The next thing to think about is which ecosystem you want to live in. Because either way, once you plug in one of these devices, some of your future choices have already been made.
If I utilize the voice search feature on the Apple TV to rent Police Academy or whatever, it’ll send me to iTunes to make that purchase, or whatever the successor to iTunes is, I know it’s going to be new. Still, we don’t know enough about that yet.
Anyway, point it, on the converse side, the Fire Stick will send me to Amazon Prime to make that same rental. Now yes, there are workarounds in either case, such as limiting your search to certain apps, but these devices are designed to work most smoothly and easily within their ecosystems.
So, you want to get the most from your Apple TV? You’d better already be an Apple fan with a bunch of their devices or a new willing convert. And of course, ditto for the Fire TV. But these devices have a ton of different apps.
So which one has the better apps? Well, I think, generally speaking, we’re pretty even here. Most of us are going to be using a streaming box like this to access the big stuff, Netflix, Hulu, Sling, that sort of thing. And both players perform that function admirably.
Most apps, most big apps, are going to be available on either one. But let’s scratch the surface a little bit. Both devices also do a pretty good job with gaming. They have remotes that let you play great looking games with simple controls, or you can go the extra mile and install a game emulator and use a Bluetooth controller to say play classic games like on the NES or SNES.
However, when it comes to apps and daily functionality, if we dig a bit deeper, I think Apple TV has started to inch ahead. Thanks to the TV app on Apple TV. I know it’s a weird name, but it’s just called the TV app.
There’s a lot to dig into with this, but I’ll keep it pretty short for now. The TV app is the simplified amplified version of something I wanted for quite a while. See, it pulls together your content from various other apps like Hulu, ESPN Plus, HBO, Stars, and yes, even Amazon Prime, and it lets you see everything in one place. Instead of jumping in and out of every app every time you want to switch over.
So, the watch now tab will pull all of the stuff you’rein the middle of watching and put it one list that you can see across your devices. Whether it’s the Apple TV or it’s your phone, or your tablet, or your Mac, it is extremely convenient.
Unfortunately, Netflix isn’t participating in this yet, I hope they do someday, but I guess we’ll see. While we’re on the subject of apps, I haven’t said anything about the new Apple TV Plus service that’s scheduled to come out later this year, and that’s on purpose.
We don’t know enough about it yet. We’ll have to see how it does when it comes out. For now, I do think it’s safe to say it will work best on Apple TV. Now, one last thing I think Apple TV comes out a bit ahead, and that has to do with the remote. Both remotes are good, don’t get me wrong, and I think I prefer the clickable circle on the Fire TV remote over the trackpad on the Apple TV remote when it comes to everyday use.
That trackpad is not friendly to sticky-fingered kids. I can tell you that right now. But, the Apple TV remote has the little microphone button on it that lets you issue commands to Siri, but it also lets you dictate email addresses and passwords, so you don’t have to hunt and peck every time you need to log in to something. This is especially helpful during the initial setup phase, but it comes in handy pretty frequently even after that, as you can imagine.
Now, with either the Apple TV or the Fire TV, you can always connect your phone and use it for its keyboard. But, the convenience of pressing a single button on your remote to take care of all that passwords and email addresses and stuff is one of my absolute favorite things about the Apple TV and has been for some time.
So there are a couple of areas where I think the Apple TV pulls ahead a bit, but for the most part, both are great devices, and I enjoy them both. They’re easy to use, they display crisp 4k HDR et cetera. But while I love the Apple TV, it’s hard for me to get past that price point.
Majority of Streamers
So for the majority of streamers out there, I would recommend the $50 Fire Stick 4k over the $160 Apple TV 4k. But, if I’m talking to an Apple superuser, I think the Apple TVs have some cross-functionality, such as with the TV app that does make it a no-brainer. And I figure if you can afford a Mac, and an iPhone, and an iPad, then you can probably shell out for an Apple TV. And frankly, you probably should, it’s great.
Now, there are a hundred other areas that. I do think that covers the broad strokes. So if there are any other little things that you love or hate about one device or the other, hit the comments below and let me know. And on your way down,