As TV technology becomes smarter and more sophisticated, the race to build better Android boxes has become a sprint rather than a marathon. This isn’t exactly surprising—in expanding the capabilities of smart TVs, these boxes give your TV computer-like capability along with the ability to perform many of the tasks that smartphones currently do as well.
So what are the best Android boxes in 2020 so far? Here’s a thumbnail rundown of the top five, complete with a brief explanation of what they can do and why they’re the most popular.
Nvidia Shield TV Pro
This is a high-quality streaming box that can also function as an excellent gaming machine if you’re into retro games. It can stream any number of PC games to your TV, along with 4K movies in several HDR formats. Its been an industry leader for a while now, and its popularity shows no signs of dropping off.
Amazon Fire Cube TV
Amazon first released the Fire TV Cube in 2017, but that product is far inferior to the one that’s on the market now. The key advances that have made it better include a processor upgrade and the additions of Dolby Vision and this combination have transformed the Fire Cube into one of the fastest streaming boxes on the market.
If you’re looking for a cheaper way to go, the Cherwell T9 is an Android box that offers both speed and efficiency. This box comes with Android 9.0 Pie, and it offers a solid assortment of games and a convenient, simple user interface. The Cherwell T9 also includes access to the Google Play Store, which can broaden the TV box experience considerably.
The feature set is impressive as well. This box supports a variety of audio and video formats, and it can even handle 4K HD video. The H.265 is a serious bandwidth saver, which means you can play hundreds of Android games on a large screen without having to wait through endless buffering intervals.
Minix NEO U9H
Like the Cherwell T9, this box represents a quality bargain option at under $50. The video speed is more than respectable, and the 64-bit Media Hub provides excellent 4K picture quality. The HDR helps contribute to that, adding brightness and contrast to the picture.
Mecool MK9 Pro
The strength of this streaming box is its versatility. The Mecool MK9 Pro takes full advantage of the Amlogic S905X2 chipset, making it possible to display YouTube content in 4K.
The versatility comes in with the voice control capability that can be combined with a remote control that provides Bluetooth voice control. This makes it possible to run the TV box using voice commands, and Google Assistant can also be used to simultaneously control smart home features.