Apple TV 4K (3rd Gen) Review: Does More, Costs a Bit Less

The Apple TV 4K is most commonly thought of as a streaming device, and this is largely accurate. However, at roughly Rs. 15,000, it’s a hefty investment compared to other streaming devices. Many people may not see the sense in investing so much when other gadgets (or even your TV’s operating system) can accomplish the same goals for far less. There’s a lot more to the Apple TV 4K than just streaming video, though, so it’s in a class all its own.

The recently released Apple TV 4K (3rd Gen) is more powerful, more competent, and more equipped than its predecessor in many aspects, yet its pricing is significantly cheaper than previously at Rs. 14,900 and up. Is the Apple TV 4K intended solely for Apple devotees, or is it useful for anyone? Examine this evaluation to learn more.

Apple TV 4K (3rd Gen) design and specifications

Smaller and lighter than its predecessor, the Apple TV 4K (3rd Gen) benefits from improved performance and picture quality. Still, it’s much bigger and heavier than the standard fare of its kind. The tabletop form factor is still present, but there are some obvious design changes, such as the removal of the Apple TV logo from the top in favour of a smaller, simpler Apple brand emblem. The non-4K model has been phased out, but the price point has dropped significantly.
The Apple TV 4K (3rd Gen) comes in the same single colour choice as its predecessors: black, along with a silver remote. There are now two models available for purchase; the cheaper one costs Rs. 14,900 and has 64GB of storage and only Wi-Fi for Internet connectivity, while the more expensive model costs Rs. 16,900 (the review unit I was sent) has 128GB of storage and an RJ45 Ethernet port in addition to Wi-Fi for wired connections.

The Ethernet port is located at the rear, next to the HDMI port and power socket; this is the only external variation between the two models. Nothing except the gadget itself, its power cord, and the remote control are included in the package; you’ll need to buy an HDMI cable to connect it to your TV and an Ethernet cable (if applicable) separately.

Apple TV 4K (3rd Gen) remote and features

The Apple TV 4K (current generation) remote is excellent because to its sleek aluminium housing, precise button layout, and responsive clickpad. The Apple TV remote (3rd Gen) includes an internal, non-changeable battery that must charge instead of the disposable and replaceable batteries used by most other streaming device remotes.

The remote itself is quite similar to its predecessor, with one major difference being the addition of a USB Type-C charging connector (no charging cable is provided in the box, though). The remote has wonderful aesthetic and tactile qualities, but it is easily damaged by scuffs and dents, so use it with care.

Apple TV 4K (3rd Gen) performance

I had speedy loading times and easy navigating on Apple’s tvOS platform. The Apple TV 4K has no discernible lag (3rd Gen). The operating system will be familiar to iOS users, with most changes made to accommodate the huge screen and remote.
tvOS can feel simplistic, with several app aspects lacking compared to Android TV or Amazon’s Fire TV. This can be good, as with the easy-to-navigate grid on the home screen and content previews at the top, but there are also drawbacks, such as limited subtitle selections in some apps, occasional HDR format compatibility issues with certain streaming services, and unreliable content-level support for Dolby Atmos on the Netflix app on tvOS.

Most tvOS apps are well-made and perform as expected, including major streaming providers and Apple Arcade games. Some popular applications (Tinder, for example) haven’t been updated in a while, but you definitely wouldn’t use them on a TV if you have a smartphone or tablet.

You may easily connect AirPods or HomePod speakers to the Apple TV 4K, like with other Apple products. The gadget downloads high-quality, high-resolution scenic footage as tvOS wallpapers. All are pretty, however the downloads are data-intensive.

Verdict

The Apple TV 4K (3rd Gen) may look like simply another streaming device – and a pricey one – but it’s much more. tvOS does its main duties effectively, although it sometimes feels outdated. Plenty of storage, helpful networking choices, and Apple’s ecosystem sweeten the bargain, especially if you already have Apple gear and services.

The Apple TV 4K is costly for a streaming device, but it’s powerful enough called a micro-console and can bring many iPhone and iPad features to your TV.

Ratings:

Design and specifications: 9
Features: 9
VFM: 7
Performance: 9
Overall: 9

Pros:

  • Very good design and build quality
  • Optional Ethernet connectivity
  • Powerful SoC, excellent specifications
  • HDR10+ now supported, in addition to Dolby Vision
  • Great for gaming
  • Lots of Apple ecosystem benefits

Cons:

  • tvOS sometimes feels oversimplified, still has some minor drawbacks
  • Siri feels under-equipped on this device
  • Still somewhat expensive despite the price drop

 

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