4K streaming boxes have become more accessible than ever but choosing the right one for you can still be some task. There are quite a few quality 4K streaming boxes in the market for you to choose from. However, we've zeroed in on the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K and Roku Premiere as the pick of the lot. Both of these are pint-sized portable 4K media players that are easy to set up and use. But there still are some deal-breakers that you need to know.
So without further ado, let's find out which of the two better suits your needs.
Amazon's years of experience in making streaming boxes all reflects in its latest 4K Fire TV Stick. It's a tiny compact dongle that plugs right into the back of your TV. You also get an additional HDMI extender cable in case there's not enough space behind your TV to accommodate the 4.7 x 1.6 x 0.5-inch sized dongle.
The Roku Premiere is also an as compact device and comes with an HDMI for connecting to your TV. It's a little more box-shaped dongle with 3.3 x 1.4 x 1-inch dimensions. And it's light enough to be mounted to the back of your TV with ease.
While the boxes themselves hardly have anything distinct, the accompanying remote controllers do. The Fire TV Stick offers an Alexa-equipped remote which can do a lot over voice commands. The Roku Premiere, meanwhile, is compatible with the Google Assistant and isn't as smart. The remote doesn't have a microphone either. However, the Roku remote does prominently feature hotkey buttons for Netflix, Sling, Hulu, and DirecTV. That's a really handy inclusion, especially for those subscribed to any of those services.
Both Amazon and Roku devices are equally capable when it comes to features on offer. They both have a very user-friendly interface and let you customize the home screen with your favorite content sources. Both the devices offer a ton of great 4K HDR content to stream on your TV.
Amazon, as one may predict, often points you towards its own video streaming and Alexa's built-in functionality. And you do get to experience true-to-life picture quality and sound with access to vivid 4K Ultra HD up to 60 fps, HDR, and Dolby Atmos audio. However, you won't get any official support for YouTube, and you probably know why. There exists a workaround but it naturally won't be as convenient as the official support.
Roku, meanwhile, gives equal weight to all of the streaming services and channels available on the platform. And the Roku app adds to the platform's functionality. The app lets you conveniently cast content from your phone to your Roku-connected TV, and does much more.
If you're already invested in Amazon products, the Fire TV 4K is for you. You can control the dongle with your Amazon Echo speaker as well. It costs $50 and really offers a lot on it.
Roku undercuts Amazon in price, and may in a way, in features as well. But if you love to stream YouTube, the Roku Premiere is a pretty great option at $40.