Last Thursday I wrote about how the various connected TV devices are jostling for content deals, creating headaches for content providers and confusion for buyers. Following up that post, yesterday I highlighted holiday deals on Smart TVs which themselves are competing for attention with connected TV devices.
Now, to put a capstone on the discussion, I'm pleased to share a handy infographic that the good folks at Shelby.tv have created, comparing and contrasting 4 of the hottest and most affordable connected TV devices, Apple TV ($99), Chromecast ($35), Roku 3 ($100) and Roku LT ($50). The infographic summarizes key features of each, what content is available (with a nice Venn diagram showing overlaps), capabilities to watch from mobile devices and the web, key drawbacks to each, and which might be most appropriate as a gift this season.
Shelby.tv's CEO Reece Pacheco told me their favorite is the Apple TV because it's easy to use and the AirPlay integration provides its users with a great lean-back experience. As a Chromecast, Apple TV and Roku XR owner, I think the infographic does a nice job capturing the pros and cons of each, but I lean toward Chromecast, mainly for its "tab-casting" flexibility to stream any video I find on the web, a feature I've used many times.
Still I think they're all solid devices, and while Shelby.tv mainly positions the infographic as helping cord-cutters decide what's best for them, I think the broader opportunity for many consumers is that they are now looking to augment existing pay-TV subscriptions with a connected TV device opening up the world of OTT content on their big-screen TVs. One thing is for certain: with the explosion of high-quality online video, this holiday season connected TV devices will be one of the most popular categories for gifts.
The infographic is below and here.