Best streaming player deals for 2021


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Prime Day 2021 may not be officially announced yet — though it’s reportedly on June 21 and 22 — but there are already a gaggle of great deals on streaming devices.

From the $90 Netflix/Chromecast bundle to up-to-$10 off both the Fire TV Stick 4K and Roku Streaming Stick Plus 4K there’s plenty of options available. All of the below devices are simple ways to upgrade older TVs with the latest streaming services, with some at or near all-time low prices. These are our favorites.

Note that prices and availability were accurate at the time of publication, but they may fluctuate.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Although the Roku Express 4K Plus is our new favorite, the Roku Streaming Stick Plus 4K is still great. The two cost the same and are basically identical aside from design, although the Express 4K Plus does support an optional Ethernet adapter. Both offer hundreds of apps, the excellent Roku interface, a robust, voice-control remote, as well as 4K HDR and Apple AirPlay.

Read our Roku Streaming Stick Plus review.

 

Sarah Tew/CNET

This is the only Fire stick that can play back 4K HDR video, and at the same price as the standard, non-4K stick, it’s worth the investment even if you don’t have a 4K TV already.

Read our Fire TV Stick 4K review.

 

Sarah Tew/CNET

Normally $30, the Fire Stick Lite delivers 1080p streaming and an Alexa-powered voice remote. While Peacock is still MIA, this is CNET’s top pick for a budget streamer, period.

Read our Fire TV Stick Lite review.

 

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Which Roku is the go-to? We break it down



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For the same price as the Ultra on a normal day, the Streambar blends a capable 4K streamer with a dialogue-enhancing soundbar. It even tosses in Bluetooth for good measure.

Read our Roku Streambar review.

 

Sarah Tew/CNET

The 2020 Roku Ultra offers a significant upgrade on other Roku devices with both a remote finder and a wired Ethernet port. Picture quality is as good as ever with Dolby Vision support, and it’s quicker than other Ultras too, thanks to its superfast processor. At $76 it’s a really good deal.

Read our Roku Ultra 2020 review.

 

Chris Monroe/CNET

There’s a lot to like about Google’s new Chromecast with Google TV, including a revamped interface, 4K HDR with Dolby Vision support, a real remote and excellent integration with Google Assistant. In a Google Store-exclusive deal, the search giant is bundling its normally $50 streamer with six months of Netflix’s Standard plan for $90. The deal is available to both new and existing Netflix subscribers.

Read our Chromecast with Google TV review.

 

Sarah Tew/CNET

The Fire TV Cube combines an Alexa voice-controlled speaker, a Fire TV 4K video streamer and a universal remote control in one device. If you like using your voice to control the TV — not to mention other devices in your Alexa-friendly household — it may well be worth taking the plunge on this interesting all-in-one product, marked down from $120 to $100. Note that this is the newest (2019) version, which has added some nice improvements since we first evaluated it in 2018.

Read more about the Fire TV Cube.

 

Sarah Tew/CNET

The Roku Premiere isn’t as good as the Roku Express 4K Plus — it lacks the voice-control remote and TV control — but if those features don’t matter to you, or if the Plus is out of stock by the time you read this, the Premiere is still a solid 4K HDR streamer value.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Cheap and dead simple, the Roku Express delivers all the joy of Roku’s platform, but in a crazy-small package. It comes with a remote, Micro-USB and HDMI ports, an HDMI cable, plus a tiny sticker to keep it in place.

Read our Roku Express (2019) review.

 

Roku

This is a bare-bones Roku that can handle all your streaming needs. It isn’t as fast as the Streaming Stick Plus and doesn’t include Roku’s more useful enhanced remote (which has a microphone for voice control and doesn’t require you to point it directly at the TV). It also lacks 4K support and new features like AirPlay. It is, however, just $17 and should be fine for basic streaming. The SE is pretty much identical to the $25 Roku Express, aside from the white color.



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