Comparison Chart of Chromecast, Apple TV and Roku Content Options

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jul 26, 2013.

  1. macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Marketing Land has assembled this comparison chart showing what subscription and rental services can be used with the new Google Chromecast, the Apple TV, and the Roku streaming boxes.

    The new Chromecast, which costs just $35, plugs into an HDMI port on a television, and needs to be charged via a USB connection. The Roku box is perhaps the most direct competitor for the Apple TV, with the Apple TV supporting AirPlay mirroring and streaming from iOS devices while the Roku delivers a number of additional content sources.


    Article Link: Comparison Chart of Chromecast, Apple TV and Roku Content Options
  2. macrumors 603


    Jan 20, 2010
    Love my Roku 3 more than my Apple TV, that's for sure. I doubt it'll be long before YouTube comes to the Roku as well.
  3. macrumors regular

    Nov 21, 2009
    Not a very useful comparison since it ignores the casting function on the Chromecast and AirPlay. And even if it mentioned the existence of these services, it still wouldn't get to the issue of the difference between Google Cast and AirPlay.
  4. macrumors 65816

    May 21, 2009
    AirPlay makes the appleTV vastly superior than the others as long as you have Macs or iOS devices. Second place goes to Roku for making a pretty decent device. Chromecast is pure garbage.
  5. macrumors 6502a

    Nicky G

    Mar 24, 2002
    Baltimore & NYC
    Is airplay with video content high-quality? I definitely notice Airplay compression when sending an Apple TV computer screen content (at moments of transitions between screens, for example). But maybe with pure video it's pretty solid?

    Would love t see Amazon Prime video on Apple TV. Would also love to see apps in general, it seems, well, kind of ridiculous it doesn't have apps already. Although admittedly, a well-designed iOS app really can essentially be an AppleTV app, with Airplay done well.
  6. macrumors 6502

    Jul 29, 2010
    Love using Airplay to send my music to my big tower speakers.

    Does Chromecast work the same? (but you must have Android device?)
  7. macrumors newbie

    Jul 26, 2013
    It might be worth noting that Roku still sells a box that supports composite video. (Though their newest offering is HDMI-only.)

    Not everybody has or needs a new HDTV.

    Edit: ...And Roku has the cheapest boxes that come with a remote.

    I like to think about "required accessories", which could mean buying an HDTV, or in Chromecast's case, buying an iPod Touch for your guests to use as a remote. $35 box with a $229 remote?
  8. macrumors regular

    Aug 28, 2012
    These things are so cheap, you don't need to have just one. I use Apple TV like 95% of the time, but switch to my old 1st gen. Roku if I need to do an Amazon rental or something.
  9. macrumors 603


    Aug 2, 2002
    Cork, Ireland.
    It's a bit of an arbitrary comparison in that chart, given no mention is made of Airplay or Home Sharing (or presumably other features on the other devices).

    Plus, it's quite US-centric, no Hulu Plus, HBO Go or Amazon Prime here, so they're much more 'level'.
  10. macrumors 68040


    Nov 17, 2003
    agreed should be some sort of screen sharing comparision as well.
  11. macrumors 65816


    Aug 6, 2008
    St. Louis
    I told a co-worker to get an Apple TV. They have an older set, and went with the Roku. It's connected with those wonderful Yellow/Red/White cables.

    After using their Roku, I went out and got my mom one (and logged her into my Netflix account). My wife then got me a Roku.

    They're really nice. The remote is Bluetooth, and not line-of-sight IR like the Apple TV, that's another plus.

    I have no idea why they don't have YouTube, though. :(
  12. macrumors 68000


    Oct 26, 2011
    Alpha Centauri A
    Raspberry pi: All that and more and Airplay and airplay-like for Android.
  13. macrumors 603


  14. macrumors regular

    May 14, 2011
    Chromecast is not locked to any specific os
  15. macrumors newbie

    Apr 29, 2008
    The main advantage of Chromecast is cross-platform with Chrome browser. It also has free public SDK enabling more usage models in the future.
  16. gatearray, Jul 26, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 29, 2013

    macrumors 65816

    Apr 24, 2010
    Wow, 20% of the functionality for 1/3 the price of ATV... No wonder all the cheapskates are falling all over themselves for this thing. :)
  17. macrumors 603


    Aug 2, 2002
    Cork, Ireland.
    While reading up about this, I just read Sky (an investor in Roku) have just launched the Now TV box; which looks like a cut-down Roku box; but for just £9.99! (not aware of non-UK pricing)

    Soon, they'll be paying us to take them.
  18. Ethere, Jul 26, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 29, 2013

    macrumors member

    Oct 13, 2009
    Central PA
    The Chromecast is great for $35 bucks. Just the fact I can use a tab from Chrome and shoot it up on the TV is worth that much. Hell, some HDMI cables themselves cost $35.
  19. macrumors G4

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002
    Merge Chromecast's formfactor w/ Roku's feature set with Apple's AirPlay and you'd have the perfect streamer.

    But as-is all 3 are lacking in either content or portability.
  20. macrumors 68030


    Sep 3, 2010
    ATV already has one -- you can mirror your device's browser to the screen, if so inclined. have never found this useful, however. prefer using the device to browser, and never need an audience.
  21. macrumors 68030


    Jul 7, 2009
    The problem I have with the device is that it misses in a really critical market. The business presentations. Seriously, if I could put this into my conference room and be able the throw up my PowerPoint presentations onto it, that would be great! Even better is when we have 20 people in the room each giving their own little presentations and have to switch from one person's computer to another -- we do this now by passing around a long HDMI cable. :(

    Second thing they need to make happen is integration with GoToMeeting and WebEx. Again, really makes it easier to share a webex meeting that way.

    As for it's current use. Sharing my laptop's browser window? Meh. Seriously if I'm pulling up the video on my laptop, I'll just watch it there, rarely do I have to show it to others. When I do share with others, I just show them my laptop screen. If I want to stream movies from Netflix, I don't want to be bothered with my laptop or iPad, or iPhone (Thus Roku or ATV). Besides having the laptop 1.5' from me is almost the same as my 50" 12' from me.

    I think it's a nice little device, but seems out of place for what it should be doing.
  22. macrumors regular

    Jul 1, 2010
    Should be a yes next to apple iTunes for roku. I stream my iTunes library to my tv anytime I want through plex in my roku. Music and movies.
  23. macrumors regular

    Aug 16, 2008
    I got a Roku for our second tv set, instead of getting another ATV.
    having used both, i can say the ATV GUI is much nicer than roku, but the roku has more things that i want (amazonprime)
    At first i thought the roku was the end of my itunes sharing, but then i discovered Plex streaming server, and that runs in the background on my mac, and allows me full access to my music and video library.

    So, its a tossup really between roku and apple to me.

    I can't imagine anyone would want to spend $35 dollars just to watch netflix...
  24. GoCubsGo, Jul 26, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 29, 2013

    macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    Because it works cross platform, it wasn't just "cheapskates" as you seem to call them so intelligently.

    It was a great deal when they offered Netflix for 3 months.
  25. macrumors 601


    Feb 22, 2003
    New Hampshire
    They used to have it on the Roku but Google made them remove it. The channel is still grandfathered though for people who owned the Roku before it was taken off.

    If you really want YouTube on the Roku, just use Plex.

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