Roku and Apple TV were amongst the first in the streaming devices segment. Hence, if you are planning to purchase an excellent streaming media player, it should be difficult to look beyond this two. They have enjoyed years of existence in the industry and that has helped them fine-tune several aspects. However, right now they are far from being perfect and each of them has its own advantages and disadvantages. Earlier, Apple TV used to be the most expensive device in the segment but recently it underwent a price cut of 69 dollars.
Earlier, Roku had the monopoly exclusive of an attractive price in the range of $50-$80. The price differential is now negated but Roku continues to off different versions unlike the Apple TV. For $50, people can purchase the streaming stick version of Roku while at $80; you will get a model that is equipped to challenge the Apple TV. Apple TV has started to show its age and it is expected that a newer version will be coming soon. The biggest regret for Apple TV, besides its age, is the continued absence of apps to rival the likes Roku.
The latter continues to be the undisputed champion in this aspect, with support for more than 1500 applications. You are bound to find every possible application on this platform while Apple TV fails to take advantage of its iTunes Store. Meanwhile Roku has improved matters with the recent addition of HBO Go and Watch ESPN to their huge app list. Roku is the leader in streaming devices and continues to remain so, with amazing efficiency. The latest apps are available on the Roku much earlier than other competitors.
In terms of screen mirroring functionality, Roku doesn’t have the advantage of the Apple Ecosystem. However, the upcoming Roku 4 could introduce such a feature. Apple TV takes full advantage in this aspect with seamless synchronization across various Apple products. Apple TV has Air Play, a screen mirroring service that works great and is probably the best in its segment. Chromecast also has the presence of this feature. While Roku is still struggling in this aspect, we could notice major changes with Roku 4 which rumors suggest will launch within the next six months. Sadly for now, even the latest launched Roku 3 does not offer a stable version of screen mirroring.