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We’ve never had so many options when it comes to where we can watch our favorite shows and movies. When “Suicide Squad” came out last week, fans didn’t have to rush to the theaters for the premiere. Through HBO Max, they could stream it from laptops, tablets, even their phones. The same goes for “In The Heights” which went live on Netflix the same day as its premiere, and “Cruella” and “Black Widow” on Disney Plus, which has even more same-day releases in the pipeline.
But despite the ease with which you can watch newly-released content from home, it’s also important to do justice to what you’re watching. As you move from the theater to the couch, you need to be set up with the right devices, ones that can offer a cinematic experience (or at least close it) at the touch of your fingers.
Here are the best media streaming devices of 2021 to buy right now — for all your binging needs.
Chromecast with Google TV
Content comes first on Google TV’s Chromecast streaming stick, which uses Google’s new TV software to seamlessly aggregate thousands of shows and movies from a variety of platforms. It works best for people who frequently hop from different streaming services, such as Hulu or HBO Max, since it has a universal Watchlist that allows you to house content from a bunch of different places in one, curated place.
Roku Streaming Stick Plus (22% Off)
You can’t go wrong with Roku, whose most recent streaming stick comes with all the entertainment you could possibly want, including (most recently) HBO Max and Peacock. Its universal search feature makes it one of the most straightforward and easy-to-use devices out there, lifting from you the frustrations of combing through thousands of titles on every service you subscribe to. Plus, at $50, it’s one of the most affordable options out there.
2021 Apple TV 4K
Despite being a little pricier, you get what you pay for with Apple TV. Just like all of Apple’s products, it features a genius interface that also comes with Dolby Vision and Atmos, in addition to Apple-specific add-ons like Apple Arcade and Apple Fitness Plus.
Amazon Fire TV Cube
Amazon’s Cube has comparable streaming capabilities to its sibling Fire TV Stick but you get more than just a streaming device with the Cube, which also serves as a hybrid smart speaker. Rather than pressing a button to initiate voice commands like with Alexa, the Cube responds to hands-free prompts just like an Amazon Echo would.
The Nvidia’s impressive GeForce Now support makes it one of the best options for gamers. But its fast performance and 4K resolution make it a premium choice for anyone who takes their at-home binge-watching seriously. Its AI-powered upscaling can make visuals even more detailed than you’re used to, while its handy Google Assistant runs in the background for easy control.