A study by research firm Strategy Analytics reports that Google’s Chromecast was the most popular streaming media device sold in 2015. Chromecasts made up 35% of the 42 million streaming devices that were bought last year.
Apparently, the $35 price tag makes the Chromecast more of an impulse purchase, being the cheapest streaming device. The cheapest devices from Google’s major rivals would be the $39 Amazon Fire stick, the $49 Roku streaming stick, and the $149 Apple TV.
The article I linked to also reports that all streaming media devices face competition from the number of smart TVs that’re now being sold. Smart TVs, or TVs with streaming services such as Roku, Hulu, etc. included in the sets, made up 54% of all connected device shipments in 2015.
While buying a smart TV might be convenient, there’s plenty of reasons in favor of buying a separate streaming device. Software updates are much more likely to come for a Roku box than a Blu-Ray player or a TV maker (though Roku’s made deals with various TV manufacturers to include its software in such sets); separate devices usually offer a larger number of features; and it’s easier to swap out for a different or better streaming device if needed.
Wikicommons photo by Raysonho (CC public domain)