set top box

Roku Express 4K+ Review: $40 of TV simplicity

Roku Express 4K+ Review: $40 of TV simplicity

For the cost of the monthly subscription to a handful of streaming services, the new Roku Express 4K+ makes a strong platform play for being your set-top box of choice. As always, Roku's pitch is flexibility and user-friendliness, only this time with a picture quality and system speed upgrade plus a handy voice remote. At $39.99, though, what's left out is just as key as what makes the cut, and that's before the challenge of getting every streaming provider to support all of your fancy new features.

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Apple TV 4K update revealed with redesigned Siri Remote

Apple TV 4K update revealed with redesigned Siri Remote

The next-generation Apple TV 4K was revealed today with new features set for release in the year 2021. This device effectively has the same name as its predecessor, but has a new A12 Bionic chip inside and enhanced features aplenty. This new device has enhanced AirPlay support with high frame rate HDR from iPhone 12 Pro and newer. It also has a new Apple TV Remote!

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Apple TV with long-awaited feature seen in tvOS 14.5 beta

Apple TV with long-awaited feature seen in tvOS 14.5 beta

Although it has been investing heavily in its digital content services, like the Apple TV app and Apple TV+ streaming subscription, the Apple TV hardware itself hasn't exactly seen much action in the past years. The current 5th generation box, which launched nearly four years ago, only added 4K 2160p support and not much else. A refresh is definitely long-overdue and might finally be coming soon. A new feature spotted in the latest beta for tvOS 14.5 hints at this upgrade which, in turn, also means a major hardware upgrade as well.

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Gaming-centric Apple TV might finally come next year

Gaming-centric Apple TV might finally come next year

"Apple TV" now means three things, depending on the context. It could refer to the Apple TV app that has become available on non-Apple platforms recently, or it could be the shortened form of Apple TV+, the VOD and streaming subscription service that's available only on the Apple TV app. Originally, however, Apple TV referred to the company's set-top box, which has almost been mostly forgotten and ignored even by Apple itself. There are, however, persistent rumors of its long-overdue revival and, given recent market trends, it might very well happen next year.

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Slingbox discontinued, services sunsetting

Slingbox discontinued, services sunsetting

Slingbox will no longer function as of November 9, 2022. Sling Media, a subsidiary of DISH, announced that they were closing shop on November 9, 2020. At that time, they said that all Slingbox servers will be permanently taken offline 24 months after the discontinued announcement date (which is, again, November 9, 2020). When November arrives in 2022, ALL Slingbox devices and services "will become inoperable."

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NVIDIA SHIELD TV Pro still available, production merely delayed

NVIDIA SHIELD TV Pro still available, production merely delayed

There has been a surge in purchases of entertainment consumer electronics these past months because of the prospect of being bored at home. Many of these involve the likes of smart TV and consoles like the Nintendo Switch but some have also opted to finally get their hands on NVIDIA's latest Android TV device. Much to their surprise and dismay, some outlets have listed the SHIELD TV Pro as "discontinued" but NVIDIA is quick to assure them that it isn't the case at all.

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DISH’s AirTV 2 now comes in a more discreet black box

DISH’s AirTV 2 now comes in a more discreet black box

Set-top boxes that blend over-the-air TV and the Internet are no longer novelties these days. Even service providers are somewhat ironically selling their own "cord-cutting" boxes, with attached subscriptions, of course. In 2017, DISH launched its first Android-powered AirTV Wi-Fi tuner with a rather odd aesthetic for a TV box. With the AirTV 2, it is correcting that error and puts all the upgraded hardware in a sleek and slim black box.

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New NVIDIA SHIELD Remote coming in 2020 but old model already gone

New NVIDIA SHIELD Remote coming in 2020 but old model already gone

It isn't uncommon for companies, especially those with fewer resources to devote to multiple generations of products, to discontinue an old model once a new one becomes available. The common practice, however, is to make sure that the new one is really available to consumers before yanking the old one out of the picture. Whether by mistake or by design, that isn't the case of NVIDIA's new SHIELD Remote and anyone who needs to buy one will have to wait for the new Remote to start shipping in about two months' time.

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NVIDIA SHIELD TV (2019) Review: Android TV meets AI upscaling magic

NVIDIA SHIELD TV (2019) Review: Android TV meets AI upscaling magic

For something intended to be hidden out of sight, the NVIDIA SHIELD TV (2019) sure is a funny shape. Then again, after four years solidifying its reputation as the go-to Android TV box, perhaps NVIDIA's brand new SHIELD TV is allowed to step outside the lines a little. One thing's for sure: with a new AI-powered upscaler, lower sticker price, and brand new remote, there's more to this 2019 model than just a fresh shape.

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NVIDIA SHIELD TV (2019) and Pro official: Android TV, AI upscaling, new remote

NVIDIA SHIELD TV (2019) and Pro official: Android TV, AI upscaling, new remote

NVIDIA's much-loved SHIELD TV is getting an upgrade, and this time the two versions of the Android TV set-top box each pack a new, AI-powered upscaling system. For gamers and the most demanding users, there's the SHIELD TV Pro, while those who simply want a potent way to watch streaming content get the SHIELD TV (2019).

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Dabby TV streaming box may have cracked the voice control problem

Dabby TV streaming box may have cracked the voice control problem

Voice control was meant to save us from the TV remote, but even with heavy-hitters like Amazon and Apple in the living room, we're still not quite there yet. That's a problem startup Dabkick believes it can fix, with its Dabby streaming entertainment system. Pairing a flexible dedicated tablet with an unexpectedly capable AI-powered search, it promises voice access to any content you can find online - without falling foul of the media behemoths.

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Caavo Control Center gains Sonos integration, mobile remote control

Caavo Control Center gains Sonos integration, mobile remote control

TVs are getting as smart as phones these days but not everyone may want or need a full-blown smart TV. Most, however, will have some set-top boxes, media centers, consoles, and speakers around that could benefit from a single hub. That's what Caavo's Control Center offered when it launched late last year and, this year, it's opening its doors to even more feature that will make you think you already do own a smart TV.

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