On Apple TV (the hardware)

Inspired by this Gruber blog post.

I have an Apple TV 4K (not the latest one) and while I don’t use it too much as 99% of my media needs are satisfied by the Fire Stick 4K (which is way cheaper and I have two of them and they still cost less than the Apple TV 4K; also they are portable and thus more useful when travelling, especially in hotel rooms) I am still glad I have one and would happily buy the latest one if it were not for the fact that it’s expensive and for that price I might as well get 2 HomePod Minis as I’ll probably get more use out of them. :)

Still, had I the cash to spare I would get it.

I like the Apple TV 4K over the Fire Stick 4K as it just feels better and smoother. Yes it works well with the Apple ecosystem as I am already a massive Apple user, and so I can easily connect my Beats earphones to it , listen to Apple Music, use familiar apps like Infuse, and it’s even a hub for my HomeKit devices (a feature less important to me as I have HomePod Minis that do the same). If I were into Apple Fitness it would have served me well there too.

But that’s not just it. Like I said the Apple TV 4K just feels smoother. Sometimes Plex on the Fire Stick 4K struggles – occasionally if I am resuming a video from midway it hangs; similarly certain subtitles knock it off and it just does circles. The same Plex app on Apple TV 4K has none of these issues – it handles everything I throw at it. And if I don’t feel like using Plex I can use Infuse – which I have on my iPhone and iPad too and they all keep in sync via iCloud.

Oh speaking of iCloud, photos. That’s another place the Apple TV 4K is useful. I can browse my photos & videos in iCloud on the larger TV screen. I can also mirror my iPhone to the Apple TV 4K (Android devices and Fire Stick 4K too can do this I think).

Another cool thing with the Apple TV 4K is switching between apps. It’s easy to quickly switch from Plex to say YouTube, watch something, switch back. Smooth and instant.

I guess all this is to say I end with Gruber’s post. :) I’ve seen a lot of people dissing on the Apple TV 4K, and all of them have a point, but I still like my Apple TV and am glad I bought it a few years ago. It fits well with my needs.