FEATURE – Those of you who have been holding off on getting an Apple set top box can now buy one for much less.
A new Apple TV — described as, “the next generation Apple TV 4K” — was announced by Apple in October via a press release posted to its website. The announcement saw the price of the streaming device lowered by $50, from $179 to $129 and $199 to $149, respectively.
But, with many retailers slashing their prices on previous generation models from last year, is the Apple TV 4K (second generation) or even the Apple TV HD a better deal?
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Deal Or No Deal?
The video output and screen resolution of your streaming device is very important as it determines how crisp and clear the images displayed on your television will appear. Apple provides the following technical specs for each Apple TV:
- Apple TV 4K (third generation) – HDMI 2.1 (up to 4K60 HDR10, HDR10+, and Dolby Vision video output)
- Apple TV 4K (second generation) – HDMI 2.1 (up to 4K60 HDR10 and Dolby Vision video output)
- Apple TV HD – HDMI 1.4 (720p or 1080p)
As for processor speed and amount of space? The Apple TV 4K (third generation) features an A15 chip and comes with either 64GB or 128GB of storage, the Apple TV 4K (second generation) features an A12 chip and comes with either 32GB or 64GB of storage, and the Apple TV HD features an A8 chip and comes with 32GB of storage.
At $149, the Apple TV 4K (third generation) with 128GB of storage is definitely a Steal but weather or not you will need the processor speed and/or use that amount of space depends on if you plan to have your Apple set top box double as a gaming console.
Compared to the Apple TV (second generation), with 64GB of storage, which originally retailed for $199, it’s certainly a great deal since the Apple TV 4K (third generation) with 128GB of storage costs $50 less and has twice the capacity. Plus, you can’t beat that price, considering the fact that $149 was the original retail price of the Apple TV HD with 32GB of storage.
On the flip side?
At $99, The lowest price seen to-date, the Apple TV 4K (second generation) with 64GB of storage is an even better deal. Compared to an Apple TV 4K (third generation) with 128GB of storage, that’s a savings of $50, not to mention, a cool $100 off the original retail price. Aside from the faster chip and twice the capacity, the only other features that set apart the new Apple TV from the previous generation models from last year our HDR10+ and the updated Siri Remote (third generation).
This particular model features both Wi-Fi + Ethernet and support for Thread mesh networking, unlike the Apple TV 4K (third generation) with 64GB of storage which costs $129 but only has Wi-Fi connectivity.
At $129, the Apple TV 4K (third generation) with 64GB of storage is not that much cheaper than the version with 128GB of storage so it would be best to go for the one that has twice the capacity for only $20 more. However, at $79, an all-time low for this particular model, you can get the Apple TV 4K (second generation) with 32GB of storage at a savings of $50. Plus, the streaming device also features Wi-Fi + Ethernet and support for Thread mesh networking, specs that the new Apple TV which replaces it doesn’t have.
Of course, there’s the Apple TV HD to consider which, for some, still can be a good deal.
Originally released in 2015, theApple TV (fourth generation) — later rebranded in 2019 with the “HD” moniker — continued to be sold by Apple alongside the pricier 4K versions as a low cost alternative. The Apple TV HD got an upgrade, albeit, a minor one, when the streaming device was updated in 2021 to include the redesigned Siri Remote (second generation) which featured a touch-enabled clickpad control, the same remote included with the Apple TV 4K (second generation).
With its older technology, some would advise you to steer clear of this particular model.
But, at $59, a record low, an Apple TV HD with 32GB of storage is a no brainer. Sure, the screen resolution may be HD versus 4K but at that price, you can afford to get one for the living room and another for the bedroom.
No matter which streaming device you end up getting, whether “the next generation Apple TV 4K” or one of the previous generation models from last year, buying an Apple set top box is now more affordable than ever!