Apple TV 4K (3rd generation) review: The best new feature is the price
- lower price
- More compact design
- Faster processor
- More storage space
- Siri remote for USB-C charging
- Still a bit overpriced
- Cheaper model lacks Ethernet or Thread
Apple has the best streaming box in the business, especially for those who use other Apple products. The new model is only better in subtle ways with a welcome new lower price, even if it’s still not as cheap as it should be.
Price at review
64GB – £149 | 128GB – £169
Best Prices Today: Apple TV 4K (2022, 3. Gen.) 128GB Wi-Fi + Ethernet
Apple has the best streaming box out there. It’s the fastest and most responsive, with the best audio and video quality (support for both Dolby Atmos and Dolby Vision), and with the update in 2021 it finally has a great remote control too. The operating system works well, shows are neatly consolidated into the TV app for most major services (with the notable exception of Netflix), and the Siri voice commands are largely useful and reliable. If you use other Apple products, the synergy between them makes the use even more enjoyable.
Unfortunately, the Apple TV 4K has also kept by far the most expensive of the popular streaming platforms. With a starting price of $179, it was easily three or four times the price of the best streaming boxes from Roku, Amazon or Google.
The new third-generation Apple TV 4K brings some small but welcome improvements, most of which won’t make much of a difference in your day-to-day use. But it also comes with a a lot reduced price – $129 for the 64 GB model and $149 for the 128 GB model. That’s a $50 price reduction for a product that’s better than the product it replaces. In today’s world of inflation and higher prices, it’s nice to see a product – a Apple product of all things – going in the opposite direction.
While still much more expensive than its contemporaries, the third-generation Apple TV 4K is at the very least a better deal than ever, and easier than ever to recommend.
Smaller, faster, more storage and USB-C
The new Apple TV 4K looks more or less like the second-generation model it replaces. It’s now physically smaller and works without a fan (not that you’d ever hear the fan on the old model). It’s still a small rounded black glossy square that fits neatly into your AV setup.
The processor has been updated from an A12 to an A15, a significant performance leap. But the A12 already handled any video app with ease and scrolled through photos or music tracks without hesitation. You won’t really notice the difference in performance until you play games on your Apple TV, which doesn’t seem to be a popular activity.
Storage has doubled with each model: the $129 version now has 64GB and the $149 has 128GB. Again, this is most important for those playing premium games on their Apple TV, as most media apps can easily fit into the old 32GB limit with space to spare. Still, more is good and there is room left for the future.
The remote hasn’t changed much since the 2021 upgrade, but the Lightning charging port on the bottom has been replaced with a USB-C port, another welcome change.
In terms of technical capabilities, the only significant difference is the addition of support for HDR10+. That’s usually a Samsung-specific upgrade to the standard HDR10 format that allows for unique metadata per video. Dolby Vision, supported since the first-generation Apple TV 4K, is a more widespread and superior format.
In other words, there is no reason to upgrade if you have the second-generation Apple TV 4K, unless you belong to the very small group of users who play premium games on your Apple TV 4K and are often annoyed by poor performance and limited storage space. room.
An improved price, but still too high
If you don’t have an Apple TV 4K, this update is your best excuse to get one. The improvements may be relatively minor, but the starting price is now $129, about 28 percent less than before, despite the more powerful processor and dual storage.
Note that the $129 model does not have an Ethernet port or support for Thread networks, but the $149 model with 128GB of storage does. That’s probably worth the $20 price difference, even if you don’t think you need those things right now.
So the story of the third-generation Apple TV 4K is pretty much the same as the last two generations: this is the best streaming box, especially for those who own an iPhone or other products in the Apple ecosystem, but it costs more than double of what the competition does. Still, the hardware refinements make this an even more obvious winner for the best streaming box crown, and the discounted price, while not where it really should be, offers better value than before.
There’s no need to upgrade if you already have an Apple TV 4K, but now is probably the best time to jump on board if you don’t already have one.