What Would You Pick: An Android TV Box Or An Android TV Dongle?

Author James Mash 29.8.2014. | 15:40

You have two practical choices when it comes to transforming the average television set into an impromptu smart computer: an Android TV dongle or an Android TV box. These Android TV devices turn your television set into a makeshift computer setup in a few short steps.

What is the difference between the two setups, though? What does an Android TV dongle have that the box kit does not and vice-versa?

Android tv boxAndroid TV doogle

Portability
The first and most obvious difference is in size and mass. A HDMI or USB TV dongle is much smaller and lighter than its box counterpart, which can be a major advantage for those that want to bring their smart TV with them wherever they go. The Android TV dongle is thus the clear choice if mobility is your priority.

Processor Speed
This is where the Android TV dongle and box are more or less on equal footing. The speed of the processor for both models will range between 1 GHz to 1.6 GHz on average, with your budget being the only real constraint in this issue. Simply check the label to find a box or dongle with processor speeds that will suit your purposes.

Internal Memory
The TV box has much more physical room for expanded hard disk drives, although this is not always the case. The average TV streaming dongle has about 8 to 16 gigabytes of storage, while some Android TV boxes have HDD docks where you can insert disk drives up 1 terabyte or more. If you plan to install a lot of movies, shows or games on your Android TV computer setup, then getting a box could be the more practical choice.

DVR Capabilities
Some TV box models not only have room for expanded data storage but also allow you to record shows as you wish. These digital video recording capabilities need a bit more hardware that is too large for the average Android TV dongle. If you want to record videos on your Android device, then a box is your best choice. Just make sure that it has DVR capabilities beforehand.

Connectivity
This is another area where Android TV dongles and boxes are somewhat balanced, with boxes taking only a slight lead over dongles. Both devices are typically capable of connecting to Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, Ethernet, USB and HDMI ports. Boxes tend to have all these options clustered in, but many higher-end dongles also support many (if not all) areas of connectivity.

Price Point
Generally speaking, the average Android TV dongle costs less than a box. This difference, however, is based largely on the specs and more components that come with the package. A dongle that has a quad-core CPU and comes with a specialized Android TV remote with a built-in keyboard and air-mouse pointer will cost more than a bare-bones box setup.

Author James Mash 29.8.2014. | 15:40
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1 Comment

  1. Isagani Esteron April 21, 10:40

    The main advantage of dongles would be their compact form factor, which makes them portable and can by tucked behind the TV for a really clean look.
    Although I prefer TV boxes over dongles mainly because of processor speed and another important factor not mentioned in the article is that dongles usually have heating problems attributed to their size and shape.

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