Ongoing Deal Discussion

Android TV Stick - convert normal TV to Smart TV (from $40, Quad-Core from $65)

[OP]
Deal Addict
Feb 13, 2003
4443 posts
5132 upvotes

Android TV Stick - convert normal TV to Smart TV (from $40, Quad-Core from $65)

So you have heard about the ideas, and some high-key products like FXI Cotton Candy. But I just read that there are alternatives at a lower price...
Source: http://liliputing.com/2012/05/74-pc-on- ... d-4-0.html

I first heard of this idea from Always Innovating, but I think it no longer manufactures the items, but instead licensing the idea. Not sure if they are the first who came out with this idea though.

Options (in chronological orders when I found them, prices are approximate because they keep changing):
- USD$42 (MK802 II) http://www.aliexpress.com/product-fm/56 ... alers.html
- USD$110+ (1GB) http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/484 ... a-smart-tv
- USD$44 (MK802) http://dx.com/p/android-4-0-mini-pc-goo ... 4gb-137012
- USD$38 (MK802) http://www.pandawill.com/cx01-mini-andr ... 63620.html
- USD$46 (UG802 Rockchip 3066 dual-core) http://www.in4dealz.com/deals/Dual-Core ... ox-600195/
- USD$40(MK802+) http://www.geekbuying.com/item/In-Stock ... 07558.html
- USD$45 (UG802) http://www.geekbuying.com/item/In-Stock ... 06693.html
- USD$41 (MK808) http://www.geekbuying.com/item/MK808-Du ... 07415.html
- USD$43 (MK808B) http://www.geekbuying.com/item/MK808B-D ... 13213.html
- USD$40 (MK802 III XMBC-ready) http://www.geekbuying.com/item/Presell- ... 12231.html
- USD$65 (Quad-Core CX-919 RK3188 with external antenna) http://www.geekbuying.com/item/Tronsmar ... 16975.html[/B] Firmware and support
- USD$55 (Quad-Core MK908 RK3188 pre-rooted and OTA firmware update) http://www.in4dealz.com/deals/Tronsmart ... ck-601058/[/B] Firmware and support
- USD$60 (Quad-Core MK908II with external antenna) http://www.in4dealz.com/deals/Tronsmart ... na-601339/

Except the kickstarter one, the others do not come with any input control device.
There are a couple input device options:
- Use a USB wired/wireless keyboard/mouse, and plug them (the devices or dongle) right into the USB ports on the sticks.
- Use a Bluetooth keyboard/mouse (needs a TV stick with BT)
- Use a free Android App and control it from your Android phone/tablet: https://play.google.com/store/apps/deta ... otecontrol (newer version here: http://blog.geekbuying.com/index.php/20 ... h0EcRv6M8Q)
- Use a paid Android App and control it from your Android phone/tablet: https://play.google.com/store/search?q=droidmote
- Buy a basic Air Mouse/Keyboard. The advantage is the support of Gyroscope. One of the most popular basic one is the Measy RC11: http://geekbuying.com/item/RC11-Android ... 06420.html.
- Buy a newer Air Mouse/Keyboard (Tronsmart TSM-01): http://www.in4dealz.com/deals/Tronsmart ... es-601070/
- Buy a nice Air Mouse/Keyboard. One of the best ones is the Mele F10 Pro. It has a built-in microphone, headphone jack, IR, and a rechargeable internal lithium battery that lasts. http://geekbuying.com/item/MELE-F10-PRO ... 16854.html

In terms of 3rd party custom firmwares/roms, head over to freaktab forum: http://www.freaktab.com/forumdisplay.ph ... er-Support

Differences between the MK802, UG802, MK808
http://liliputing.com/2012/09/ug802-roc ... as-69.html
http://www.squidoo.com/mk808-dual-core-android-mini-pc
http://www.shenzhenpc2u.com/2012/09/mk8 ... -tv-stick/

UPDATE May 30, 2012
Today I read about yet another similar stick which seems even cooler just because it includes 2 different remotes of your choice (a normal remote or a full qwerty keyboard). It also has a more well-known Cortex A9 CPU:
Alternative? (Starting from USD$99) http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/484 ... a-smart-tv
It's still a kick-starter, so no one knows when it will ship

Already funded, so you can no longer purchase it until it's out

UPDATE Aug 7, 2012
A couple places have increased the the RAM to 1GB and lowered their prices.

UPDATE Sep 7, 2012
Added another model using a 1.2GHz Cortex-A9 Rockchip 3066 CPU (UG802)

UPDATE Oct 6, 2012
Added another model using MK802+ with 1GB ram for $40 only!

UPDATE Oct 11, 2012
Added information about Droidmote, a server/client app that allows you to turns your Android phone into a remote for the MK802 at least.
Added a MK808 model with Android 4.1 JellyBean

UPDATE Dec 13, 2012
Added another model based on UHost U1A chip??? Probably another Allwinner A10 variant, with wifi-n support. $35
See this post for details: http://forums.redflagdeals.com/android- ... st15963439

UPDATED May 10, 2013
Added one with MK808B with built-in bluetooth.
Removed a couple ones that are no longer listed. Wonder if I should remove all the old models altogether.

UPDATED July 17, 2013
Added a QuadCore RK3166 Tronsmart CX-919 with external antenna. I believe it will help with the wifi strength common in these TV sticks.

UPDATED July 23, 2013
Added a QuadCore RK3166 Tronsmart MK908 with OTA firmware update and is pre-rooted. It also contains dual internal antenna.
get what is cheap, not what you need :lol:
2290 replies
Deal Expert
Apr 30, 2003
24044 posts
4127 upvotes
Toronto
That looks pretty nice actually. Combine with a USB hub and that 32GB MicroSD deal from earlier and everything's under $100 all in.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Jun 3, 2006
6018 posts
1703 upvotes
Toronto
As much as I want to try using Aliexpress (esp with their Gee Cee R cashback deal...), no PayPal kinda turns me away.

I'll wait for DX to carry it, which shouldn't be long.
Deal Guru
User avatar
Mar 1, 2008
10411 posts
1106 upvotes
Toronto, Ontario
So... What's the purpose of this?
Member
Nov 19, 2009
430 posts
212 upvotes
Toronto
I love the idea but I'm kind of at a loss for how these things work. For example, what do I use for input? i assume that I can download something like say, the Netflix app for android and watch Netflix on my TV, but how do I control it?
[OP]
Deal Addict
Feb 13, 2003
4443 posts
5132 upvotes
Malta wrote:
May 23rd, 2012 7:50 pm
I love the idea but I'm kind of at a loss for how these things work. For example, what do I use for input? i assume that I can download something like say, the Netflix app for android and watch Netflix on my TV, but how do I control it?

If I had to guess, one should be able to download some kind of app so that you an control it with your smartphone, just like those Samsung remote app.
get what is cheap, not what you need :lol:
Deal Expert
User avatar
Dec 11, 2005
18563 posts
1008 upvotes
Malta wrote:
May 23rd, 2012 7:50 pm
I love the idea but I'm kind of at a loss for how these things work. For example, what do I use for input? i assume that I can download something like say, the Netflix app for android and watch Netflix on my TV, but how do I control it?

You plug in a wireless mouse to the USB port.

OP is confusing things talking about the USB port on the TV. You would not use that at all. The USB port on this is a USB *HOST* port, for a mouse or keyboard or other device. So you power this thing from a Micro USB, then plug HDMI into one side and USB mouse into the other.

The real question I have is - can this thing actually play x264 MKVs. It does not appear to have the horsepower for this IMO. Can probably do Hulu and Netflix though.
To be nobody but yourself - in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else - means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting. -- E. E. Cummings
Sr. Member
User avatar
Apr 2, 2008
974 posts
148 upvotes
GTA
Why not consider a Raspberry Pi. The price ranges from $25 to $35 US.
Deal Fanatic
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Jun 3, 2006
6018 posts
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Toronto
DragOnT wrote:
May 23rd, 2012 8:07 pm
Why not consider a Raspberry Pi. The price ranges from $25 to $35 US.

This thing's actually a bit more powerful with the Cortex A8. Also runs Android 4.0 out of the box, where RPi it's still being worked on.

Though I guess on the long run the community support is better with RPi, this is good for something if you just want to play with now.
Member
Dec 9, 2001
258 posts
17 upvotes
Scarborough
brunes wrote:
May 23rd, 2012 7:59 pm
You plug in a wireless mouse to the USB port.

OP is confusing things talking about the USB port on the TV. You would not use that at all. The USB port on this is a USB *HOST* port, for a mouse or keyboard or other device. So you power this thing from a Micro USB, then plug HDMI into one side and USB mouse into the other.

The real question I have is - can this thing actually play x264 MKVs. It does not appear to have the horsepower for this IMO. Can probably do Hulu and Netflix though.

Why do you think it can't play x264 MKV's?
I think it lists right on the specs page:

Video

WMV/ASF/MP4/3GP/3G2M4V/AVI/MJPEG/RV10/DivX/VC-1/MPEG-2/

MPEG-4/H.263/H.264/1280*720P HD 30 fps, 1080P/720*480 D1 30fps
[OP]
Deal Addict
Feb 13, 2003
4443 posts
5132 upvotes
brunes wrote:
May 23rd, 2012 7:59 pm
You plug in a wireless mouse to the USB port.

OP is confusing things talking about the USB port on the TV. You would not use that at all. The USB port on this is a USB *HOST* port, for a mouse or keyboard or other device. So you power this thing from a Micro USB, then plug HDMI into one side and USB mouse into the other.

The real question I have is - can this thing actually play x264 MKVs. It does not appear to have the horsepower for this IMO. Can probably do Hulu and Netflix though.

Sorry, I have probably confused this with the USB dongle/Cotton Candy.... I thought this thing plugs to the USB port of the TV, but it looks like it uses a power adapter instead, which is actually more flexible. Though I'm not sure since there is no clear wordings around the power input.
get what is cheap, not what you need :lol:
Newbie
Jul 15, 2008
60 posts
10 upvotes
Beloeil
I like the idea, but the fact that it carries only 512 mb to run ICS (which officially requires 1 gb) and from what I can find a single core chip is like borderline specs.
I would not expect great performance from such a device.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Feb 13, 2003
4443 posts
5132 upvotes
Thumper wrote:
May 23rd, 2012 9:08 pm
It this the same or another one:
http://www.zero-devices.com/

Like the idea of it being Wi-FI, it that is true?

This is the alternative 2. Unfortunately RFD referral link messed up the URL.
get what is cheap, not what you need :lol:
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