- Dec 23, 2009
- Reaction score
Chromecast: At $35 the Chromecast is hands down the cheapest option for streaming content but do not let the price fool you as it will hold its own against the competition. What sets the Chromecast apart from the Roku hdmi streaming stick is the speed in which you go from set up to streaming. Literally you take the Chromecast out the box, plug it in, enter the code on the screen, and you are ready to go (literally easy as 1,2,3). The contents you want to stream such as Netflix, Hulu, or Youtube is downloaded from the Google Play Store and is ready to cast simply by hitting the cast button in the upper right hand portion of the screen. Where the chromecast come up short is the content that can be streamed. Still for $35 it is a nice device for watching Youtube, Netflix, Hulu Plus, or Google movies. The chromecast also have the most upside as we are seeing development turn out more and more content, everything from games to productivity apps can be found in the play store and you also can mirror your computer through chrome browser (soon to include phones and tablets). Thanks to GoKo it is even easier to find apps that will work on your chromecast with the Cast Store App (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=goko.gcs).
Roku Hdmi Streaming stick: This is roku's answer to the chromecast as it is priced to be more competitive versus the other roku devices and take its design cue from the chromecast. At $50 it is still more than what it will cost for the chromecast but in my opinion it is worth the price. From box to set up takes much longer than the set up on the chromecast and the remote slows you down when signing into your accounts. Thankfully they have a Roku app (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.roku.remote) which makes setting up easier since you can use your keyboard to type in passwords versus using the arrows on the remote. The other negative is that once you get all your content set up at times there is a lag when browsing through channels and media content but that is where the cons end. Where the roku Hdmi stick shine is that it feels more polished then the Chromecast. Where the chromecast feels like an unfinished device (with potential) the roku feels like a device ready for primetime. With more content such as Watch Espn, History channel, Youtube, Vudu, Hulu Plus, Fox, and more (see here for full channel list https://www.roku.com/channels/#!browse/movies-and-tv/by-popular) the device feels more like a media powerhouse than a developer device. There is also the option to change the resolution from 720 to 1080.
For me the Roku hands down is the better device right now as there is just a lot more content. Yeah it cost $15 more, takes $15 minutes longer to set up, and there is a slight lag to navigate through content, but if I had to choose one device to buy I am buying the roku. The purpose of having a device like this is for content and though we expect the content to come to chromecast soon, there are some of us that want it now. I highly expected to like the chromecast over the roku being a google fan but I was blown a way with the content and the user experience of the Roku stick.
So if you want a device that is clean, easy to set up, can cast your computer screen, and potentially have the most upside then the chromecast may be for you. But if you want your content now especially the ability to watch lives sports via espn, want a larger selection of choices to choose from, willing to pass up the ability to cast your computer screen, and can shell out an extra $15 then I highly recommend the roku hdmi streaming stick for you especially for those with families .
Stay tuned for more content and talk about these devices.