The Google Chromecast with Google TV is the best choice in our guide best streaming devices, because it provides an attractive, detailed interface for navigating apps at an affordable price. If you’re finding the smart platform built into your TV to be slow or clunky and want to make the switch, Google has launched a new sale that cuts the 4K streamer down to $40.
Google has run this discount several times in the past: It’s a few dollars more than the lowest price we’ve ever seen, but it’s still $10 off the device’s regular price. This is also Chromecast’s first big discount of the new year. The offer is available at several retailers, including Amazon. Best Buy, B&H and Google Store. According to Google listIt will continue until February 11.
4K Chromecast was released in 2020 and does not support Wi-Fi 6 (or 6E), so we wouldn’t be surprised to see an update at some point. That said, the current model is still fast enough to navigate apps and download content. It supports all major streaming services and the most commonly used HDR formats (Dolby Vision, HDR10, HDR10+), as well as Dolby Atmos audio via HDMI passthrough. The dongle itself plugs directly into a TV’s HDMI port, and it comes with a simple remote that can also control your TV’s volume and power (although there’s no dedicated play/pause button).
But you will buy Chromecast mainly for its UI. Instead of offering a grid of apps like a Roku device, Google TV takes a more content-centric approach, proactively recommending shows and movies you might like based on your viewing history. It works well: Recommendations are pulled from a wide range of services, and the series you’ve watched recently are usually placed at the top, so it’s easy to skip to the next episode. It can also integrate with certain live TV services like YouTube TV and Sling TV to show what’s on the right from the menu. You can create separate personalized profiles for different people, and contextual searches through Google Assistant usually work great. You’ll still see sponsored content, as with most broadcasters, but the advertising here isn’t as bad as, say, Amazon’s Fire TV Sticks.
The Roku Streaming Stick 4K Another affordable option we recommend in our buying guide; It’s also currently available for $39, though that deal has been around for most of the last two months. Its app-based interface is simpler than Google TV, and it’s generally not as accurate as Chromecast when searching for content. But if you want a streamer that just shows you programs and gets out of the way, this might be a better fit. Roku’s streamer also supports Apple AirPlay, so you can stream content directly from your iPhone to it. $129 if you have more money to burn Apple TV 4K faster and less ad-laden than either device, however other currently not heavily discounted.