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Chromecast Ultra vs Apple TV: Next-Gen SMACKDOWN!

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Chromecast Ultra vs Apple TV: Next-Gen SMACKDOWN!

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How does Google's new Chromecast ULTRA stack up towards Apple's Apple TV?

Michael Grothaus 12:09, 13 Oct 2016

Apple and Google fight it out on many fronts: smartphones, apps, cloud products and services, or even maps. However this upcoming vacations season each are going to be proceeding the fight in but any other conflict–and the prize is none instead of your front room. Sure, each firms have just lately progressed their choices on their virtual media gamers units.

For Google, it’s the all-new Chromecast Ultra. For Apple, it’s the corporate’s 4th era Apple TV, first launched remaining yr, however just lately up to date with the brand new tvOS 10 running gadget. The 2 units take radically other approaches to getting content material in your TV. So how do the 2 new units stack up towards each and every different? We took a glance to determine.

Chromecast Ultra VS Apple TV: Specifications

Right here’s the specifications for the Chromecast Ultra:

  • Output: HDMI
  • Processor: unknown
  • RAM: unknown
  • Garage: unknown, however 256MB flash most probably
  • Max. Output Video Solution: 4K w/HDR (HDR10 & Dolby Imaginative and prescient)
  • Dimensions: 58.2 in diameter, 13.7mm (H)
  • Weight: 47 g
  • Connectivity: Ethernet, 802.11ac Wi‑Fi

And right here’s the specifications for the 4th gen Apple TV:

  • Output: HDMI
  • Processor: Twin-core A8 chip
  • RAM: 2 GB
  • Garage: 32 GB or 64 GB
  • Max. Output Video Solution: 1080p
  • Dimensions: 98(L) x 98(W) x 33(H) mm
  • Weight: 425 g
  • Connectivity: Ethernet, 802.11ac Wi‑Fi, Bluetooth 4.0

Let’s get the spec everybody cares about out of the best way: video output. Right here, its obviously a win for the Chromecast Ultra. Why? Since the Ultra helps video resolutions as much as 4K and in addition helps HDR on most sensible of that. HDR stands for Top Dynamic Vary and it lets in for a extra brilliant colour pallet in video and video games together with brighter whites, deeper blacks and extra herbal colours. The caveat here's although extra 4K content material is to be had on a daily basis on streaming products and services like Netflix and Top Video, HDR content material continues to be very restricted (you additionally want a TV able to 4K and HDR viewing). That being stated, 4K on my own candidly beats the 1080p high quality the Apple TV places out. And 4K + HDR? The Apple TV’s 1080p doesn’t stand an opportunity.

Shifting directly to different specifications: each units be offering the most recent Wi-Fi connectivity– 802.11ac, so your streaming shall be extra solid and you're more likely to see a lot much less buffering. However while you get to the RAM and garage, the brand new Chromecast Ultra seems to be woefully underpowered. Although Google hasn’t introduced the garage it gives, it’s most probably most effective were given 256MB of 512MB of garage and round 512MB of RAM. That compares to the 32 or 64GB (the Apple TV is available in two sizes) of garage for the Apple TV and the 2GB of RAM it has. The cause of the adaptation is since the two units are designed very in a different way. The Chromecast Ultra is supposed to just be a bridge to flow content material out of your cellular tool on your TV set–it doesn’t want a large number of garage or RAM to try this. The Apple TV however is supposed to behave as a central hub that now not best streams content material, however retail outlets such things as films and apps and video games proper at the software itself.

Chromecast Ultra VS Apple TV: Design

The 2 units couldn’t be designed extra another way. The Apple TV takes the type of a sq. set most sensible field that sits under your TV in your house leisure middle. It’s higher as a result of there’s extra stuff packed inside of. The Chromecast Ultra then again takes the shape issue of a disc-shaped dongle that will get plugged into an HDMI port at the aspect or in again of your TV.

Chromecast Ultra VS Apple TV: OS and UI

The brand new Apple TV options a brand spanking new OS referred to as tvOS–and it’s simply been up to date to tvOS 10 final month. It’s in response to iOS and lets in for the power so as to add apps and video games for your Apple TV simply as you do on your iPhone–thru a devoted App Retailer. The Apple TV additionally has a made over interface that presentations to be had content material, together with films, TV presentations, apps, and video games, in a grid like type.

The Chromecast Ultra, however, doesn’t have any more or less consumer interface. Because the Chromecast Ultra is largely only a bridge between your cellular software and your TV, the whole thing you do with it–each and every approach you have interaction with it–is treated thru your cellular software. With the Chromecast Ultra you’ll see no TV interface you navigate round. As a result of this, should you don’t have a cellular tool on you, the Chromecast Ultra is nearly nugatory because it on its own doesn’t can help you flick through or watch any content material.

Chromecast Ultra VS Apple TV: Content material

Talking of content material, each units are lovely smartly stocked–simply in several tactics. For the Apple TV and its devoted interface you get your films and TV presentations by means of the iTunes Retailer and 3rd birthday celebration apps like BBC iPlayer, YouTube, Netflix, Hulu, HBO GO, Showtime Anytime, PBS, CNBC, ESPN, and extra. With the brand new Apple TV you additionally get content material within the type of apps and video games. Apps can come with such things as climate and delivery apps and video games will probably be alongside the strains of informal video games that you simply see at the iOS App Retailer.

The best way the Chromecast Ultra handles content material is a little other. Because it has no interface, all of the content material you view in your Chromecast Ultra-connected TV is streamed (or “forged”) at once out of your cellular software. This comprises films and TV presentations, in addition to apps and video games. As a result of the wealth of flicks and TV presentations to be had on Google Play, and the massive selection of apps that enhance Chromecast Ultra (Google Play Films, BBC iPlayer, HBO Move, Hulu Plus, Netflix, Pandora, Vevo, YouTube, and extra) you’re more likely to just about in finding the similar content material to be had on each units.

Chromecast Ultra VS Apple TV: Remotes

The massive distinction between the 2 units comes within the faraway keep an eye on division. The Chromecast Ultra doesn’t come with a bodily faraway in any respect. Your cellular tool and the devoted Chromecast Ultra app are the one remotes you get. Any app that helps Chromecast Ultra works as a far flung when your press the Forged button within the app. And the brand new Google Cast app additionally has some cool bells and whistles. It now gives a function referred to as Rapid Play, that predicts what chances are you'll need to watch subsequent after the display you're gazing now and starts to preload a portion of that display so you'll be able to start enjoying it in an instant. The Forged app additionally works as a type of channel information, permitting you to look content material throughout all Chromecast Ultra-compatible apps to seek out what you wish to have to observe subsequent.

However the ones remotes faded compared to the brand new Siri Far flung incorporated with the Apple TV. The faraway provides a trackpad above the bodily buttons to you'll be able to swipe and faucet your approach across the Apple TV’s interface. However the explanation why it’s referred to as the Siri Faraway is as it additionally has Siri inbuilt. With it you'll be able to regulate your Apple TV via voice instructions, together with the use of common seek to seek out content material according to name, actor, or director. The Siri Faraway additionally permits you to regulate video playback simply by talking “rewind” or “rapid ahead” and it additionally solutions queries like “what’s the elements?”.

Chromecast Ultra VS Apple TV: Worth & Verdict

The 32 GB style Apple TV prices £129 and the 64 GB model prices £179. The brand new Chromecast Ultra will most effective value £69. Yeah, that’s a HUGE distinction–however on the other hand those units are wildly other too.

And that distinction makes it very arduous to claim a winner. Despite the fact that they each permit you to watch content material in your TV, their approach of doing so couldn’t be extra other. The Chromecast Ultra is supposed to be a fairly cheap dongle that hyperlinks your cellular software together with your TV–and it does that exceptionally smartly. The Apple TV however is supposed to be the brand new hub of your front room–the iPhone of your TV, if you'll–that acts as a tool unto itself. As a result of that–and its extra complex specifications and devoted far flung regulate–it’s costlier.

For me, the Apple TV is the winner as a result of I’m partial to the previous one and I love have a devoted tool I will be able to use to observe content material without having my phone or tablet close by. However when you aren’t in Apple’s ecosystem and you're on the lookout for only a reasonable option to flip your common TV into a sensible TV, the brand new Chromecast Ultra is tricky to mention no to.

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