Don’t be upset Android TV is dying, Google Cast is where it’s at

android_tv_screen

By December 2017, Android TV will be dead. Google could barely care any less about it, and there’s another platform that is way better for both the company and consumers. So let’s just be honest: being upset Android TV is on the way out is ridiculous. Who cares about it? You don’t. I definitely don’t. Even Google doesn’t. The mountain of hardware partners Google announced when Android TV launched was impressive, but they’ve all left the platform high and dry because of little flexibility and and poor demand. Seeing what Android is capable of on mobile devices makes Android TV look like a boring, locked-up product from a company who doesn’t play nice with others. Android TV should be open and change-friendly. Instead it exists like Apple TV where what you buy is all you get.

Yet again, Google is going to let its platform for the living room slip away without ever trying to fix things. At least this time there’s a replacement that can do better than anything we’ve ever seen. It would be best if Google cut off Android TV today and shifted those resources to Google Cast.

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Android TV isn’t Google’s first rodeo in the living room. More than five years ago, Google built a platform to instantaneously create a smart television for anyone who purchased a Google TV-powered television or set-top box. Google TV offered dedicated apps that could be played right on top of traditional programming on television as it connected to television providers’ own set-top boxes.

Companies backing Google TV included Sony and Logitech with LG, Vizio, and ASUS following shortly after. Google TV, as seen by those hardware manufacturers, wasn’t lacking support. It lacked direction. The televisions and set-top boxes were insanely expensive, and no one could tell Google TV was meant to replace a cable or satellite subscription. Remember this was in 2010 when media players like Apple TV and Roku were just getting popular. Those options were simple because they connected through a different input and featured their own separate user interfaces. Consumers knew, if they wanted to stream something, they could go to one of those devices. Televisions and set-top boxes with Google TV were confusing everyone, especially with outlandish pricing.

Despite wanting to hang on and keep it around, Google TV was finally put down for good in January 2015. Google had better plans to get you to use Android in your living room but one thing came about between Google TV’s shutdown and Android TV’s debut.

Before Android TV was born, a little $35 dongle became the golden boy the media player world.

Chromecast_02133

The original Chromecast was a big surprise in 2013. It burst onto the scene with a slim price tag and big potential. The concept of the device was simple: mirror whatever is normally on your phone or tablet’s screen to your television. No need for specialized apps or anything else. If you have a wireless connection and a display with an HDMI port, the Chromecast is ready for use.

google chromecast

Google purposely waited as long as possible before releasing a successor to the first device and for a totally valid reason. The Chromecast’s hardware is basically meaningless. The technology, called Google Cast, is what’s vital. Google Cast detects supported devices on a network and then displays its icon on phones and tablets so that you can start casting movies, television shows, music, games, and more.

It took less than two years for 17 million units to be sold and Google has proudly watched Chromecast climb the charts as one of the most popular media players. Because of Google Cast, Google was able to become a serious player in a field that it struggled to make noise in with Google TV.

Oddly, Google still wasn’t satisfied with its presence in home entertainment. Maybe it was the desire to put Android on every screen you have. Or perhaps it was a disappointment that Apple and Amazon had more expensive media players selling very well. After all, the margins can’t be all that big when the Chromecast sells for just $35 with various promotions before and after buying. Whatever it was that Google felt caused the company to create Android TV, a move that is now viewed as a big mistake to me.

Android_TV_Sign_Google_IO_TA

Google put pressure on the Chromecast and Google Cast at Google I/O 2014, the week that Android TV became a thing.

Android TV is similar to Google TV — like really, really similar. The clear difference is Android TV’s alignment with Android, of course. This platform has dedicated apps like Google TV, but they don’t run on top of your television provider’s setup. To get to Android TV, you have to switch inputs. From there, it’s almost like you’re using Android on a bigger screen. Android TV lives in its own world familiar to anyone with another Android device.

Google was given exactly what it wanted two years ago: commitment from the outside. Sharp and Sony raised their hands to make televisions while ASUS and Razer signed up to release set-top boxes. On top of that, various partners like Qualcomm, Marvell, Intel, and NVIDIA expressed approval for Android TV. It really appeared that Google was going to barge into your living room with a ready-to-alter platform for its partners.

nexusplayer-official

Momentum generated by Android TV coming to fruition in 2014 vanished in a matter months. The Nexus Player, a set-top box built by ASUS on behalf of Google, was a major letdown. Instead of rolling out a device that was even halfway decent, Google allowed a piece of junk lightweight lead the way. It featured an Intel Atom Z3560 processor, 1GB of RAM, and 8GB of internal storage. Skimping on the latter two is a problem with almost any type of device, but Google decided getting the Nexus Player to cost $99 was more important than performance.

Thankfully for everyone involved, the Nexus Player is no longer in production; however, that doesn’t indicate better devices are around. Device after device, we’ve been disappointed.

Two gaming-driven brands got behind Android TV with their own set-top boxes, and only NVIDIA’s has survived one year later. Razer showed up with an ambitious plan to have full gaming from PCs stream on its Forge TV. Well, Razer’s set-top box flopped. Consumers and critics weren’t kind. The serious gaming set-top box was NVIDIA’s SHIELD, which was and still is Google’s scapegoat for Android TV.

The issue with gaming set-top boxes is that they’re completely useless. Gamers already have a high-end PC or a video game console to do the heavy lifting. Non-gamers — those who want to play a little bit of Crossy Road here and there — have a phone or tablet on-hand to fulfill their wants.

xiaomi_mi_box_set-top_box

Next up to fail is Xiaomi’s Mi Box. The Chinese company is, bizarrely, choosing to release a set-top box with Android TV before it takes its phones and tablets to key markets like the North America. Nothing is going to change when the Mi Box goes on sale. Sure, it supports 4K resolution. As does the SHIELD. But we’d all be lying saying 4K resolution on a set-top box was important to us. The format isn’t even mainstream yet.

The Mi Box, like the set-top boxes from NVIDIA and Razer, is facing a disadvantage that only Google can be blamed for.

RCA-4K-UHD-Android-TV

Bringing up Android TV-powered televisions is pointless. These smart televisions are expensive and chances are you have a device capable of running circles around Android TV connected to your current television.

Android_TV_Expansion

The proverbial nail in the coffin for Android TV? The company skipped any mention of the platform during its Google I/O 2016 keynote and then quietly slipped in an announcement while that presentation was going on. It’s dying. We would have seen the platform showcased in Mountain View to get people interested again had Google cared about Android TV and its future. Since Android TV was missing from the keynote, we weren’t given false hope. We were reminded that Android TV doesn’t matter.

No cares about Android TV, not even Google. Why bother anymore?

vizio_smartcast_p-series_tablet_controlling_tv

Google Cast is so straightforward it’s baffling Google hasn’t ditched Android TV yet. A real push has been made by Google, following its rebranding of the technology, to get Google Cast into new devices.

Vizio has three SmartCast series with Google Cast-ready televisions starting for as little as $229. Their SmartCast E-Series 50-inch model can actually be purchased for less than $500! You’re getting the power of Google Cast, a superior technology compared to Android TV, for way less than what most of those awkward smart televisions cost. Polaroid will be joining Vizio with its own line of 4K televisions that feature Google Cast.

Then there are countless audio products from companies like Vizio, LG, and Sony that support Google Cast. Versatility is nowhere to be found on Android TV.

While your phone or tablet acts as the controller for Google Cast, Android TV requires a controller provided by the television or set-top box maker. Android TV forces you into an unnecessary place from the get-go. Google Cast, meanwhile, lets you use what you already have by your side all the time. The people who I’ve chatted with have been split down the middle as to whether or not you could rely on your phone or tablet as a remote. As you might have guessed, I’m firmly believe you can. What happens if you’re using a controller and it breaks? Better have backup. Google Cast doesn’t care what happens because you can use another phone or tablet to command devices.

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Android TV’s inferiority to Google Cast is apparent from the moment you start using either platform. Google Cast is cheaper to get into, you already have what you need, and you’re not crossing your fingers that an update comes along that may or may not reach your device. Android TV can be very expensive, it requires specific controllers, and you’re gambling supported apps and software updates.

Google Cast is a companion for my phone and tablet. It’s not ‘another thing’ I have to buy. Android TV is a separate place that I have venture off to. When I want to stream Seinfeld on Hulu, Android TV offers no incentive. Google Cast, though, just asks me to fire up the Hulu app. If I’m feeling in the mood to play a game, Google Play’s catalog is weak and NVIDIA’s own game streaming service is pricey for most. And I have an Xbox One to play real titles on, not to mention the phone or tablet I have can crank out performance with sharp graphics. That’s why my NVIDIA SHIELD is collecting dust while my two Chromecasts are used multiple times per week. Even if you don’t have a video game console like me, Google Cast is the better choice based on simplicity and price. Buying a $35 streaming stick or a $1,000 television with Google Cast is way smarter than putting trust into Android TV at any price.

Android TV was set up to fail and Google is having a hard time letting go, but Google just needs to know that it’s fine for Android TV to go away. A tear won’t be shed. Google Cast is here (and always has been) to save the day.


About the Author: Justin Herrick

Born and raised in New Jersey, Justin is a graduate of Fairleigh Dickinson University where he studied marketing with a focus on digital marketing. He's very talkative and enjoys discussing anything from technology and sports to video games and television. As for Justin's current device rotation, he carries around the Google Pixel and Nexus 9. In the rare case that his phone or tablet is not in his hand, he is either flicking through cards on his Moto 360 (2015) or typing away on the Microsoft Surface Book. Justin is patiently waiting for the day that Google replicates the Galaxy Nexus with modern day specifications.


  • Jamie S

    I’ll take my Nvidia Shield console over a cast enabled TV anytime. 4K is the future of home entertainment. Can you cast to a TV in 4K? I don’t think so

    • Justin_Herrick

      What content are you streaming in 4K? Because there’s not a lot of it available at the moment and many people don’t have televisions ready for it.

      • Jamie S

        Netflix, YouTube, 4K movies App. As for 4K televisions, in Australia those things are selling like hotcakes and with 4K Blu-ray Players and disks now available sales will only continue to grow.

    • DefaultUser

      why wouldn’t that be possible?

      • Jamie S

        I’m not saying it impossible but at the moment casting doesn’t support 4K streaming. Plus I prefer a wired connection via HDMI with fast internet rather than rely on an unstable casting connection.

        • Karl Dagenais

          Pretty sure you can if the device supports it, wether cast enabled TV or shield TV.

  • http://pdts.net/ PdtS

    Genuinely surprised by this text. Haven’t found one substantial proof that Android TV is ‘dying’ in it, only a ranty opinion, rather wishful thinking.
    Android TV is a great product alone with potential roughly equal to Android itself. It shines especially compared to the god awful proprietary smart TV platforms like Tizen and webOS. There is simply no competition there, none. There’s now a universe between a Sony’s smart TV experience and Samsung’s.

    • Justin_Herrick

      So the lack of support isn’t proof? Google isn’t advancing the platform and hardware manufacturers aren’t showing up.

      Google Cast, however, works brilliantly and more partners are signing up for it.

      • Kawshik Ahmed

        No support? This are the apps that are announced in Google I/O this year.

        • Justin_Herrick

          “coming soon” … Yet Google Cast just requires a little tweaking of an existing app to get those services on your television.

          • Franck Kamayou

            Stop defending yourself, if you have used an Android TV or knew anything about app development, you would know it also only take little tweaking of an existing app to make it Android TV ready. Also Android TV is a super set of Google Cast.

          • Karl Dagenais

            Samw thing for andoidtv, its the same apps with a new ui embedded.

            Also, Google announced picture in picture for Android TV in Android N at Google IO. You’re just uninformed and wrote garbage, accept it.

      • Kawshik Ahmed

        Also list of Google Hardware Partners sign up for Android TV

        • Justin_Herrick

          How many of those sell devices around the world? Not many, and notice that ZTE is on the list. I don’t think they’ve even announced an Android TV-powered device.

          • Kawshik Ahmed

            It’s not a dated list,Google still didn’t listed them as Android TV partner in their GMS list.
            ZTE does make Android TV like ZXV10 B800S2, to sell them to other OEM not to public.

      • http://pdts.net/ PdtS

        No, it’s not.
        Why would new manufacturers show up without a market’s push? Most big players have their own smart TV platforms which they monetize with such margins that physical TV sales can only dream of. Go ahead and research that.
        Imagine there were no market threat to phone manufacturers from Apple back in 2008 – do you for a minute suppose Samsung or Motorola would abandon their developments to jump on some search company’s weird OS?

        • Justin_Herrick

          Exactly. There’s no push from Google with Android TV, so hardware manufacturers aren’t showing up. But there is a push from Google with Google Cast.

          • http://pdts.net/ PdtS

            Google can’t.. push it, only market can. And right now Android TV is a problem for many manufacturers, not a solution.
            I feel like I’m talking to a student who copied an essay from a scientific journal and trying to present it, having no idea what’s it about. Do your research. This is poor expertise, even for TalkAndroid.

      • http://www.nerdshowandtell.com/ nerdshowandtell.com

        you didnt see google io?

  • Richard Dennis

    I like my nexus player, i like that i can cast to it or operate it directly

  • https://plus.google.com/+JulienValiquette Detilly

    LOL

  • Omar F. Rodriguez Morales

    You couldn’t be more wrong dude, hoping that December 2017 comes and rub on your little and mislead article how wrong you were, check your facts first, how moronic waste of time writing this

  • bmlsayshi

    We get it. You don’t like Android TV. Many of us love it and use it every day. It’s not going anywhere. Terrible article. I would never use a google cast, it can’t do any of the things I use my Nvidia Shield TV for.

  • Steve Avino

    Dude what are you talking about? They talked about Android TV at I/O and it is the opposite of a closed platform. I think you are confused.

    • Raiders12

      A slew of new apps for Android TV including Comcast Xfinity for direct streaming of your cable subscription… Yeah its dying /sarc

  • Steve Avino

    RCA is coming out with 4k Android TVs this summer priced low. The Shield TV is the best thing I ever bought.

  • eric messenger

    Android TV can be completely controlled via your phone as could Google TV. Otherwise having owned both Google TV and Android TV (which both support cast) I actually agree with the article for the most part. If you can start casting games and most video content and using your phone as a controller then what’s the point of another os? Let Nvidia handle the more advanced gaming which is working great as well as their streaming service.

  • https://long2know.com long2know

    I bought an Android TV (Shield) for Christmas and have not been disappointed. After the marshmallow update, I popped a 128GB microSD card into it and have been very happy.

    This device has real games, GeforceGo games, emulators, and, with it, I have no use for the current crop of game consoles. The device came with a remote control and have controller for $150. In my mind, it’s the perfect price point. With its library and streaming capabilities, I will completely forgo the current crop of dedicated game consoles that do less.

  • http://www.nerdshowandtell.com/ nerdshowandtell.com

    Someone must have missed the news about google, etc getting into cable boxes, and all the news that just came out of Google IO. Got rid of chromecasts and replaced them all with shieldtvs. Never looked back.

    • UberCrew

      Exactly there was an article about Comcast testing their Xfinity TV app on a Shield Android TV.

  • eclectice

    Bro, with Android TV, it can be a wireless display in the extended display mode for my PC and laptop via the built-in Google Cast feature…You cannot do that with Android smartphone where Google Cast on the smartphone just duplicates its screen onto the TV screen.

  • Craig Isakson

    Wow, this article is so far off base. To each their own but compared to Android TV, Chromecast is very lacking. There are tons of apps that don’t support casting one main one is Kodi. I run my whole house off Shields for 100% of all my TV and have been very happy. Also, the need to not unlock my phone to change the channel is also a better experience.

    • Justin_Herrick

      If you think Google Cast is lacking, take another look at Android TV.

      • Cleric05

        If you kept reading, past the part where he said Google cast was lacking, he claims to be running his whole home off of Nvidia shields,an android TV device.

        For cable cutters I think Android TV is “The bees knees. ” running kodi/spmc off of the shield TV has been a great experience. the nexus player did fine, but lacked the power to run everything I threw at it, x265 specifically.
        I use Google cast as well, but only for the random YouTube video(s). If I try and cast a movie to the device via my native video player, something always seems to unsync… And on top of it all, my phones screen has to be on the whole time,which means I have to have the phone plugged in to watch a movie and for some just isn’t practical, not to mention, if you receive a phone call during the show you can’t just excuse yourself and let the others keep watching.
        I’d like to see better integration of Google cast on android TV, the chromecast to me is a great product if all you do for entertainment is watch YouTube videos, but for a cable Cutter, it just won’t fit the bill

        My 2 cents

      • UberCrew

        With google cast you are a slave to your phone or tablet. With Android TV you have dedicated hardware to do all the work and dont have to tie up your phone or tablet. This has worked well for Roku, Amazon and Apple. Google cast is usefull for occasional streaming but I would much rather rely on a more powerful box with a remote than slaving my phone or tablet for streaming to a big screen for hours at a time.

  • Darkcobalt

    It’s very interesting to hear through comment just how many people have and love their Shield. This type of loyalty makes me wonder whether there’s something the platform still, even though I myself have no use for it.

    The basic premise that I like about Justin’s article is that Google Cast makes a lot of sense and ties thing together nicely since you almost always already have a tablet or phone nearby and “casting” makes a lot of sense, while Android TV has always felt (to me) kind of half baked. Half the time I’m already on my tablet when I want to show someone something, and trying to get that content again onto a Google TV makes no sense to me at all.

  • Mr Ford

    It may make sense when Google decides to fully support cec, so end users can have a physical remote control the experience fully. As it currently stands, you have to control volume of the Chromecast device separately from the volume of the playback device. Example: user A uses the volume control in the app to turn down the feed when a call comes in. When user B picks up the TV remote and pushes play (supported hdmi-cec feature) and notices the low volume also uses the TV remote that’s in their hand to turn up TV volume. Now TV volume is relatively high and cast volume is relatively low. When either user switches TV to live TV or any other input, TV volume may be much higher than necessary. The volume issue is but one gripe I have the cast in its current form, even though I’m generally a fan, and I have 6 Chromecast devices in my home.

  • Duder12

    Justin_Herrick RCA just picked up Android TV and their TVs are already releasing. That nullifies your statement about any cheap manufactures coming on board.

    The fact that you think this compares to Google TV at all is hilarious. I wrote an an for Google TV and say like 20 dls in its lifetime. Iet 5 per day on Android TV.

    Oh and here is all the sessions on Android TV at IO. I fully expect next year to have even more. Maybe then you will start writing garbage but part of me thinks you will be writing about the end of Project Fi and Google Fiber soon.

    Building connected experiences for the home

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HukWdsRayqQ&

    Bring your Android app to Android TV in minutes

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qv-e1sV3gos

    Streaming media with Exoplayer

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vOzOZ7hRr00

    Bringing live channels to Android TV

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TsRg0A93FgM

    An in-depth look at the Leanback Library

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QFHIfQy8_Wc

    • Justin_Herrick

      Project Fi and Google Fiber are very different than Android TV from a business standpoint. They’re not even ‘primetime’ products yet. Android TV’s chance came and went.

      • Duder12

        Sony is selling Android TVs in droves and Google is in the process of integrating Google home into Android TV. Nothing has came and gone.

        Don’t forget to write that article end of next year explaining why you were wrong.

        • http://www.cia.gov LogitechFan

          Sony is not selling anything. Samsung has TV market cornered at 65%. Just like they have the smartphone market cornered. Sony are going to be in the red again this year TVs-wise. 10th year in the row. Get a clue.

  • Omar F. Rodriguez Morales

    I’m glad to see i am not the only one who disagrees with this article, the following line, is kinda misinformed, because line ups like the x830c’s prices go from 600 to 800

    “Buying a $35 streaming stick or a $1,000 television with Google Cast is way smarter than putting trust into Android TV at any price”.

    http://www.sony.com/electronics/televisions/xbr-x830c-series

    We get it, you don’t like Android TV, maybe you should invest better your time and efforts, but writing objectively and properly is not your thing

    • Raiders12

      When they were on sale, you get a dedicated nexus player for $15 more than a chrome cast. Any techie would invest an additional $15 for a lot more functionality

    • Trasher

      I agree, this article is too biased. .

  • Mayerro

    Are you nuts? Your article makes no sense, go shoot yourself!!!

  • Raiders12

    Longtime HTPC/media PC user and builder, and I enjoy my $50 Nexus player which seconds as a chrome cast. One thing this article leaves off, live TV integration with HDhomerun Prime cable card tuner. Android TV now natively supports incorporation of TV tuners and networked tuners. I stream 1080p premium cable to my bedroom no problems. You won’t be doing that with Google Cast. I setup a couples new Bravia TV with ATV, and same thing perfect integration of their Comcast set top box and one stop portal for other media apps, no need to keep your phone or tablet nearby and dedicated to pausing/playing/FWD….

    • Richard Barry

      I too have followed your path. Shield in living room and Nexus in a bedroom. I had a win10 machine running a HTPC and have completely switched
      to the Shield without regret. The only issue I have is I am on Time Warner and many of their channels are DRM flagged and Live Channels is still not certified compliant I hope “N” will address this issue. I think Nvidia should setup in store hands on Demos. I reasearched the device before buying but in actual use the platform really shines.

      • Raiders12

        My HTPC still runs Win7 for Windows Media Center with DRM/playready capabilities. I then run ServerWmc to stream DRM channels through Kodi or Emby if need be…. Hopefully Google or Nvidia addresses DRM one day

  • digitalhigh

    Funny, talking with my friend who’s on the development team for ShieldTV at Nvidia, and apparently, they didn’t get the memo that some self-serving tool wrote an article predicting the death of the console they’re investing quite significantly in.

    As was said, this is a very biased article without a lot of actual substance to support the claims being made. In reality, we have regular development on the Shield, new Vulkan API’s to encourage gaming, and more and more television manufacturers offering Android TV.

    And from what I can tell, then number of Android TV apps continues to grow. The Live Channels app and API is also very exciting, and already has a decent chunk of support.

    So, I think you may need to rename your article “I’m upset Android TV Isn’t Dying”…

    • UberCrew

      The author of this article is clueless. No idea how this nonsense “article” was even allowed to be posted. Guess the people at talkandroid don’t care about the integrity of articles posted on their site.

  • Kyle Salewski

    This article is a joke. So biased. Since your Shield is collecting dust, I’ll PM you a PO box for you to send it to me and I’ll take it off your hands for you. Also, the great thing about ATV is that it can do Google Cast plus a TON of other things — that’s what is so great about it.

  • Karl Dagenais

    Good job proving my point. It won’t on a chromecast because the device doesn’t support 4k. On a shield it would.

    • Jamie S

      Well No, I’m pretty sure casting to a Shield only takes up to 1080 as it uses the Google Cast technology which only supports up to 1080p. Pls let me know if you can prove otherwise

  • ZingZonZot

    You sir write a very laughable article saying Google cast is superior to Android TV, Android TV has Google cast built in, it has an interface for the TV, where googlecast is well just Google cast if you are all awe inspired by its whimsical magic of casting from your phone or tablet that’s your special helmet. But what about those who don’t have a smart phone? Or a tablet? We you just going to tell them on just spend $300-$500 and you can cast to your TV? Yeah might as well just buy an Android TV STB or a TV with the Android TV baked in… so your logic is flawed man, I would rather use a physical User Interface on my TV than getting up looking around for my phone or tablet just to watch and cast something, and some of the apps aren’t Google Cast ready that we all use like Kodi. The NVidia Shield TV is a class of its own out ranks what the Nexus Player lacked in hardware and capabilities, from what I hear Google may be working on a new Nexus Player but doesn’t know what manufacturer should get the time. But I think more Android TV STB should be made Sony should make one up they did make up a STB for Google TV last time as did Logitech, Hell I’d buy a stereo receiver or amp with Android TV baked in, or even a BlueRay player if it had it.

  • apolloa

    A VERY few parts of this report are true, the majority if it is a load of bollocks! Nothing more then personal OPINIONS of someone hurt, so much bs in it, I love how their is not one mention of the Amazon Fire TV, you know the box that’s sold in the millions and runs Amazon’s forked version of Android TV!
    Or the ridiculous slander of the Shield TV in this article that COMPLETELY MISSES the target audience for the device, it collects dust because I have a PC or games console, then you make the assumption (not fact) most others are the same! And yet people are still buying it…. it is designed for casual gamers of which their are plenty off plus it is the best device for Kodi or SPMC, people use that for their digital media collections. As for overpriced game streaming service for some great games including new ones! Sony charges you more per month to stream PS3 games! But you didn’t mention that. Nor did you ever mention how you can stream those games from the PC you mention in your article to the Shield TV, and I won’t even go into how Google Cast is built into Android TV as I think it will fly right over your head.
    Do yourself, and everyone else a big favour Justin and please never write anything for the web EVER again, because from your article it is very obvious we are not the ones who are upset, you are obviously very biased, I bet you have an Apple TV eh and your jealous Android TV is better?

  • Raum Dellamorte

    The Shield TV, which is the current best Android TV device, is a cord-cutters wet dream. If you have an Android TV device, you have Google Cast. I don’t have cable and I don’t want to have to find what I want to watch on my computer and cast it just to watch it on the larger television screen.

    My Shield replaced my Roku for all my entertainment needs. I don’t have to keep my phone plugged in to cast or bother with interrupting my computer activities to find and pause/play/etc what I’m casting. Between PLEX, Kodi, Hulu, and Netflix, I have “ma shows”. I can use a keyboard and mouse with it and treat it as a cheap but capable computer. I’ve wanted Android on a PC for a long time.

    The Shield is very capable of console quality graphics but as of yet, the support isn’t there. Doom 3 looks as good as ever and comes with Doom and Doom 2 for nostalgia’s sake, but most of the graphics intense stuff is streamed from my Steam collection or NVidia’s streaming service. I’m just hoping articles like this one don’t scare off developers.

    Clearly I’m biased in the opposite direction of this article, but Casting is the thing I use the least on this device. I HAD to use it for the summer Olympics, but it was a pain to have to stop what I’m doing to pause and rewind etc. and really irritating that I couldn’t use my remote for said things because Google Cast isn’t designed with a remote in mind. Say you’re casting from your PC and it’s in another room? Not my case, but a remote that sends directions to the casting device would be super useful. And when I was running Linux on my PC, I just straight up couldn’t use the NBC Sports site to watch, let alone cast, the Olympics without installing Win7 on a virtual machine. I could cast from my phone, which is Android, but it was a pain and I don’t like making my poor phone get so hot just to watch something on the TV.

    I’m waiting on the native games, but in the meantime I have a complete cable replacement, all my Steam games, a few awesome native games (some of which I can’t even get anywhere but Android as I don’t have an iPhone/Pad), a way I can try out games I don’t want to buy via NVidia’s streaming service, a spare Android and/or Linux PC, a development platform for my own Android projects, and if I really want or need to cast something, I can do that as well. If NBCSports had bothered to include Android TV in their development I probably would have no need of the Google Cast feature, though I’m glad it’s there. There are a plethora of Android games that would only require adding controller support to work. Apart from certain Wii like actions, most games would work better with a regular controller, and for the Wii like stuff, one of the sticks could be used as a mouse if you don’t have a mouse connected. The only thing the Shield lacks is developer support and this article isn’t helping.

    All in all, the only thing Android TV has to fear is fear-mongers themselves. Outside of Windows, which thanks to Win10 is becoming more of a closed box, Android is the most game-developer supported “Linux” distro around AND it does all your media, so WTF? I only hope that everything that is SteamOS (which is a Linux distro) gets ported over to Android TV (since it’s already Linux) and wrapped in an app called “Steam” since Win10’s plan is literally to cripple Steam on PC until its users decide it would be better to get their games through the Windows Store.

  • djghettoredneck

    I own 3 Nvidia Shield Android TV consoles. This story is just bullshit. I hate casting.

  • http://www.cia.gov LogitechFan

    Love how all those buttheart crapdroid tv owners here are trashing the article. Just because you suckers have bought into yet another google’s pet project does not mean the article is wrong. Both Samsung and lg (about 80% of higher-end tvs sold in the world) use their own OSs, sony is not selling crap, they are all the way down there with less than 8% market share in tvs and 0.6% in mobile. The rest of the partners are not selling any volume. Android tv is dead, so is Android Wear.

    • UberCrew

      Well, the guy who lives in the basement of the guy who wrote the article agrees with him. I guess that makes it true. Android TV devices are still selling which means it’s still alive whether you or your buddy like it or not. Now go clean the toilet of all that crap you just spouted before he kicks you out of his basement.

  • fredphoesh

    What horseshit! Android TV is way, way, way more powerful, versatile, capable than one trick pony chromecast. Try running Kodi or console games on a stupid dongle.

    • Atomi

      in my opinion, that comparison between chromecast and android tv isn’t fair at all.
      chromecast gives any tv owner an option to make their old tv support many different services, there isn’t any smart tv platforms that give you same potential to grow the amount of services like that.

      example if there would come a service that grow somehow much bigger than netflix, show me smart tv platform that could easily adopt to have that service. most of the time smart-tv’s have those services that they advertise during purchase, and nothing more.

      however with chromecast those servicew providers just need to add chromecast support to their app, and so your tv from 2008 suddenly has that “bigger and better than netflix” from 2017 on it, and it only cost you 35$ extra.

      however android tv is more expensive option and at least with nvidia shield, it also supports chromecast.
      however unlike chromecast that requires you to control those services with smartphone or tablet, android tv gives you more flexibility to run apps like kodi or even psp emulators just to name a few.
      only downside of android tv is that how you sell it to the masses if android tv boxes cost between 100$ to 300$ and chromecast cost you only measly 35$.

  • Sicofante

    Well, Nvidia is bringing a new Shield TV to the market next month. Poor Nvidia people haven’t read this article before building that new model…

  • Job Veldkamp

    I’m actually really enjoying my shield 2017. And is has chromecast and Google play included, so many options. And off course there are other options, but I got little kids and they can find Netflix (or yell it) and play a handful of games. Nothing outdated here, just find what you need.

  • Mario Osvald

    what nonsense of an article. Just for example: try to cast any .AVI movie from a NAS storage to a google cast. Impossible unless you purchase apps who “unlock” the format for casting. and even then, it disrupts, freezes, and while casting (from a third device to a TV- mind you), you cannot use your phone. A joke.
    Since few weeks I own a Bravia Android TV and it works like a charm. it plays anything you throw at it, no matter source, format and size.
    the app market is growing and I have no doubt it will be mainstream in few years.

  • Halal Bacon

    nope

  • Phil Butterworth

    My 3 word review of this review: “Highly opinionated garbage.”

    It’s clear that this author has never touched the shield tv, hands down one of the best streaming boxes out there. This is due in large part to the fact that it is completely unchained by the android tv OS. The author goes on to say the device is pointless as it only appeals to gamers who will already have a PC or console, all the while forgetting that gamers are also typically tech people. Tech people like top end highly customizable tech. Which is why I have all three. While I cannot attest to the rest of the android tv boxes out there I do know that he is dead wrong about this one.

    • Justin_Herrick

      Hate to break it to you, but I own the NVIDIA SHIELD. It collects dust and is rarely used. I’m very much a tech person.

      Everyone is entitled to their own opinions. I shared mine and I respect yours.

  • philip

    This article is very opinionated and seems like the author is one of those people that wont help you with anything unless you do it his way. My Nvidia Shield pro is my favorite device I have ever owned, including my smart phones and computers. It is exactly what I have wanted for years and I use it around 6 hours a day and people that come to my house end up buying one because they love it to. Its not something that the average person is going to know they want just by walking past the box on a shelf but when they see me using it at my house they love it. My shield tv connects to every streaming service I use, it also lets me use it as a plex server which has saved me money because I was able to ditch the power hungry server I was running before and it lets me play my steam games on my couch and my android games that I had purchased for my phone and then some. Not to mention the new smart home hub features which I have started to take advantage of and I have even downloaded an app on it that gives me apple airplay functionality, I can stream my display from iphones, macbooks, imacs (which means it can do everything apple tv can do), android, and chrome browsers. Plus I plan on putting ubuntu on one for a solar powered computer for an offgrid cabin. I can not imagine not owning one now that I have one.

  • Paul Nossenko Jr

    Wow. Author = Wrong, Article= Wrong

    Android boxes are booming still a year later after this article.

    WETEK CORE4k= BEST ANDROID BOX

    I have one and surpasses every other box.
    Hardware is overkill. Designed specific for Kodi and other apps. Only box with HD 4K Netflix and so much more.

    Android boxes are the future and here to stay. Here to replace all cable TV including Netflix.

  • Mr Ford

    Just wanted to come back a year later and have another good laugh at this article.

  • angryenglishman

    chromecast is rubbish i sold mine same day i brought it., sooner have a nice android box thanks.