Apple TV vs Fire Stick: A Head-to-Head Comparison.
We’ve finally started getting Smart TVs at an affordable price, making it easy to stream TV shows without a dedicated device. But sometimes their streaming performance usually leaves something to be desired.
That’s why a dedicated streaming device is a must for anyone who wants to be entertained on the big screen. But this raises a more important question: which streaming device should you choose?
For most people, it comes down to two options: Apple TV or Amazon Fire Stick. One is a premium offering from the creator of the iPhone, and the other is a value-for-money device from the global e-commerce giant. So which one is the best choice for you? Let’s find out.
Apple TV 4K Vs. Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K: The Rundown
Let’s get one thing clear from the start: both streaming devices are great options for streaming content to an UHD TV without any issues. They differ only in some quality of life features and prices.
Apple TV 4K is the more expensive option. Apple is known for its highly polished premium products, and this nifty little device is no exception. The small, square-shaped hub supports spatial audio, Ethernet connectivity, and offers a much larger catalog of streaming services than the competition.
On the other hand, the Fire TV is an inexpensive joystick that quietly hides behind your TV screen. It’s by no means a “cheap” alternative, easily outperforming basic devices like the Roku streaming stick or Chromecast. Whether it’s video quality or Dolby Atmos support, the Amazon Fire TV flash drive matches the Apple TV streaming box in every way.
Common Features in Both Streaming Devices
Before we get to the differences, let’s talk about the commonalities of both devices.
First, streaming. Both devices give you access to the most common streaming services such as Disney Plus, Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime Video.For music, you get access to all major music apps such as Spotify, Deezer and Amazon Music. li>In terms of picture quality, Apple TV and Fire Stick support HDR10 (HDR10+ for Amazon device) and Dolby Vision at 4K Ultra HD resolution.
For audio, you get Dolby Atmos, Dolby 5.1, and Dolby 7.1, and Apple’s streamer also offers Spatial Audio.For smart homes, you’ll be fine with both. You can control your smart home devices with any voice assistant: Siri or Alexa.Also, the Bluetooth connection allows you to connect to the controller and start playing on the TV without connecting the console.
Apple TV 4K Exclusive Features
The first major difference between the two devices is the design. Apple TV is not a flash drive that you plug into the HDMI port behind your TV and never see again. Its boxy shape ensures you need to lay it flat, which can be a problem in an already crowded home theater.Siri controls the Apple TV remote and connects you to the Apple ecosystem. App Store, Apple TV app, iTunes and Apple Music. While you can’t download Android apps, the Apple TV has more streaming apps than the Fire TV stick. Plus, there’s Apple Arcade, giving you access to a library of quality games.
Apple TV also outperforms its competitors in terms of connectivity. You can connect your Apple TV streaming box to your router’s Ethernet port for faster internet speeds. While this can lead to cable clutter (since you also need an HDMI cable to connect to your TV), you can opt for a Wi-Fi 6 connection instead.You’ll also get a much more convenient experience if you’re an Apple user. The same Apple ID will allow you to access your media on all your Apple devices, whether it’s a Mac, iPad, iPhone, or Apple TV. You can even use your iPhone or iPad to control your Apple TV.
Highlights of Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K
The highlight of the Amazon streaming stick is the price. The Apple TV 4K costs three times as much for more or less the same features. For any reasonable buyer, this will immediately become a decisive factor.
The lower price of a video streaming device usually means lower video quality, but this is not the case here. Like the Apple TV, the Amazon Fire TV Stick supports 4K video output with HDR. It supports HDR10+, an improved version that adjusts color and contrast for each scene. It only works with select Samsung and Panasonic TVs and is only available on content provided by Amazon Prime Video (at least among popular streaming services).
Another advantage is that Fire TV is built on the Android OS. This allows you to download Android apps and access various apps or games that are not available on the Fire Stick by default.
Until recently, the Alexa voice remote was also much better than the one offered with the Apple TV. The Siri remote was known for its ultra-responsive touchpad and lack of buttons. But a recent update fixed this issue and the voice remote works fine on both streaming devices.
Apple TV or Amazon Fire TV Stick: Which Is the Best Streaming Device?
Amazon’s Fire TV box is the best option given the price. So does the Apple TV offer any features that the cheaper competitor doesn’t?
Well, there are a couple of them. Most important, perhaps, are the excellent connectivity. Because Apple TV supports Wi-Fi-6 and Ethernet, it can take full advantage of your broadband connection for seamless streaming.
Another big advantage is the ad-free interface. There is nothing more annoying than sifting through ads even in the menu, which is a problem with a Fire TV flash drive. Apple’s streaming box also gives you a wider choice of streaming channels, in addition to not being too irritated in promoting your services.
But if there are no connection problems, and you have no problems with ads, then the Fire TV Stick 4K is what you need. It’s much cheaper, fits easily behind a TV screen, and comes with a more flexible Alexa ecosystem. Entrepreneurial users will also be able to download Android apps to the Fire TV stick, further expanding its functionality.
Apple TV vs Fire Stick: A Head-to-Head Comparison
Apple TV vs Fire Stick: A Head-to-Head Comparison