8 Best Android TV Boxes | April 2017

We spent 33 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. It's now pretty easy to ditch that expensive cable or satellite TV company and start saving thousands of dollars a year without losing access to all your favorite games, TV shows and movies. These multifunctional Android boxes make it painless to cut the cord by streaming all your favorite content, in Ultra HD, too, where available. Skip to the best android tv box on Amazon.
8 Best Android TV Boxes | April 2017
Overall Rank: 8
Best Mid-Range
★★★
Overall Rank: 1
Best High-End
★★★★★
Overall Rank: 6
Best Inexpensive
★★★
8
The Minix NEO X8-H Plus provides full access to install your own applications and save media files right inside its 16-GB internal storage. It comes complete with a keyboard and mouse, making navigation and inputting commands easy.
  • supports most popular video formats
  • headphone jack for private listening
  • setup can be time consuming
Brand Jesurun
Model MINIX NEO X8-H Plus
Weight 2.4 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0
7
The Matricom G-Box Q² was redesigned in 2016 with a faster processor and the ability to support Amazon Prime video, which is rarely found in Non-Amazon branded devices. It has 16GB of internal storage and allows you to install nearly any Android app without limitations.
  • unconditional 1 year warranty
  • rarely freezes or crashes
  • remote is hard to navigate with
Brand Matricom
Model Gbox Q
Weight 1.1 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0
6
The Kitbox X92 is fully loaded with an Amlogic S912 Octa-core Cortex A5 processor and a Mali-T820 GPU, giving it smooth graphics processing and ultra fast app speeds. In addition to video streaming via apps like Netflix and Kodi, it also has a Web browser.
  • multi-language support
  • supports 3d gaming
  • usb ports for a keyboard and mouse
Brand kitbox
Model LYSB01N631KHJ-ELECTRNCS
Weight 1.4 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0
5
The Stream Team Media onD has one of the cleanest user interfaces of any media streamer on the market. It comes with XBMC already installed, which contains a number of video and game add-ons, meaning a near limitless amount of movies, TV shows, and games for you.
  • has some live sports channels
  • qwerty-style air mouse keyboard
  • comes with a recovery sd card
Brand Stream Team Media onD
Model pending
Weight 1.5 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0
4
The Minix NEO U1 is a compact unit that can fit in nearly any entertainment center. It is ultra responsive to user inputs and supports up to 10-bit color format and 4K ultra high definition at 60 FPS, producing a crisp and vibrant onscreen image.
  • silent thermal control system
  • clean and well-designed interface
  • limited functionality on remote
Brand MINIX
Model Neo U1
Weight 1.9 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0
3
The all-in-one Rveal RT5 offers infinite entertainment in HD without any monthly fees. It can be set up within minutes and includes an upgraded air mouse remote and keyboard to make navigation a breeze. Plus it automatically updates its software as needed.
  • works anywhere in the world
  • convenient 24-hour tech support
  • portable size is great for travel
Brand Rveal
Model RT5
Weight 16 ounces
Rating 5.0 / 5.0
2
Prime members should definitely consider the Amazon Fire TV. Not only is it available at a low price, which makes it a great value, but it offers access to thousands of movies and TV shows plus exclusive Amazon content, too. It also supports 4K Ultra HD streaming.
  • comes with the alexa voice remote
  • intuitive home screen
  • easy to install kodi
Brand Amazon
Model DV83YW
Weight 1.4 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0
1
The Nvidia SHIELD Pro is a sleek looking device that has the features to match its good looks. Users can command it via Google voice controls to search for movies and TV shows from more than 60 top streaming apps, including Netflix, Hulu, Vudu, and HBO.
  • supports 4k video streaming
  • 16 gb of onboard storage
  • can stream games from geforce now
Brand NVIDIA
Model 945-12571-2500-010
Weight 4.5 pounds
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

Buyer's Guide

The Androids Are Among Us

In the golden age of television, old fashioned cable boxes couldn't be less popular. The boxes themselves have always been a pain, causing additional rental fees to consumers and coming loaded with inexplicable bugs. Now, even the big cable companies like Spectrum and Comcast are offering their customers streaming-only viewing options that have long been favored by users of third-party TV streaming boxes.

Despite the popularity and ease of use presented by these companies like Roku, Apple TV, and their ilk, more and more Android TV boxes keep cropping up around the market. The demand is understandable; those more popular TV boxes are closed platforms where the Android boxes allow you to make all kinds of alterations to customize your experience. It's rather akin to the argument between users of Android phones and their Apple equivalents.

In addition to streaming 1080p video with the best of them, the Android TV boxes we recommend also allow you to play a number of fantastic games by pairing them with a controller of your choice.

The other great thing about these boxes is that they can be used as internet browsers on your television, pairing with wireless keyboards and mouses to give you a full computing experience in the middle of your entertainment center.

What's In The Box?

To look at them in a police lineup, you might be hard pressed to figure out which of these boxes packs the most punch. Looking inside them won't tell you too much either, unless you know what you're looking for when you crack one open.

If you do know at you're looking at in there, you'll begin to see some of the more important differences among these boxes, like the processors they're using or what version of Android a given box can support. The key here is picking the best system for durability, especially as 4K finds its way over the fiberoptic cable that the cable companies have begun laying all across the country.

A lot of Android boxes use yesterday's processing capabilities to keep their prices low, especially since they're primarily uni-taskers, only needing to run one operation at a time. Still, 4K demands a lot of processing power, and a box outfitted to smoothly stream 1080 will be obsolete faster than one equipped to handle the impending 4K revolution.

There's also price to consider, and since Android boxes often require a mouse interface to navigate the user interface, a box that comes with a wireless mouse–or better yet a mouse and a keyboard–gains significant price points over one that doesn't.

This last point may not be too salient for a lot of you, but there's a certain degree of style to the design of a lot of these boxes, and it's worth taking into account how the boxes on our list look. After all, they are going to become a centerpiece around your living space.

TV On The Internet...in The 90s?

When I was a kid, just as everyone was getting their hands on these increasingly ubiquitous AOL starter discs, a friend of mine had his parents acquire a strange device called WebTV. It was a Microsoft product that connected your telephone's internet signal through a crude computer box that displayed a browser window on your television screen. My friends and I used it for studious research into human anatomy.

That was in the late 1990s, and just before the turn of the millennium, even after Microsoft has stopped selling the device, their user numbers grew to nearly 800,000. There was a demand, but the tech was still struggling to raise to the wants of the consumer.

TIVO showed up after that, introducing for the first time a sense that you didn't have to be in your home in front of your TV at a given moment to watch your favorite shows. Suddenly, Nielsen ratings began to lose their relevance like an old Vegas crooner at the dawn of Rock 'n Roll.

Apple dropped their first TV device in 2007, though it took until January of 2008 for a software update to allow it to run autonomously, disconnected from any other Apple device. The first generation Roku boxes appeared soon after that in 2008, and they were billed as Netflix devices before anything else.

TV studios took notice of the trends, and began desperately trying ways to get people to watch their shows while they aired, as the industry was still desperately clinging to their on-air ratings numbers to sell advertising spots. They even joined forces with Twitter and had their show's stars live-tweet with fans exclusively during live broadcasts.

The irony there, of course, is that most of the live-tweeting took place during commercial breaks, diverting attention away from the very ads for which they were trying to sell spots. Now, Android TV boxes have come to tempt a significant amount of the market toward a more customized experience, and a full compliment of the latest games, apps, and features.



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Last updated on April 27 2017 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as behind the computer screen, Brett can either be found hacking furiously away at the keyboard or perhaps enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He hopes to one day become a modern day renaissance man.