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Xiaomi has now officially unveiled its Mi TV Stick powered by Android TV. The announcement came as part of a wider ecosystem product launch that included a new fitness band and an eclectic scooter.
The Xiaomi Mi TV Stick had leaked multiple times over the last few months and the official announcement did not really add much beyond those leaks. For example, there is still no official word on the price or whether the Android TV streaming player will be available to buy in the United States.
However, the announcement did confirm that the Mi TV Stick comes powered by Android TV, supports Dolby and DTS surround sound, Google Assistant and Chromecast. The other main specs touted in the release included, 1GB RAM, 8GB storage, a quad-core processor, as well as the inclusion of shortcut buttons for Netflix and Prime Video.
Since the announcement, a dedicated Mi TV page has also gone live on the Xiaomi website, providing more information on the new streaming player. As a result, other now confirmed specs include:
- 1080p resolution
- ARM Mali-450 GPU
- Bluetooth 4.2
- Wi-Fi 2.4GHz and 5GHz
- HDMI port
- Micro USB port
- Android 9.0
Probably not an Android TV savior product
Android TV is in need of more standalone set-top boxes and dongle-based devices, like the Mi TV Stick. This is particularly true at the cheaper end of the player market where the options have been limited, and largely spearheaded in recent years by Xiaomi’s Mi Box line of devices. In fact, considering the Mi Box S is currently one of the cheaper Android TV devices around, the suggestion that a stick alternative was coming from the same company offered some hope to Android TV consumers that this could be a very cheap option.
However, without confirmation of US availability and no firm information on the cost, the Mi TV Stick is looking less like a reliable product to help Android TV battle against Amazon and Roku who have both seen success with affordable sticks and are currently better placed to appeal to entry-level streaming consumers.
Availability and price aside, there are also some other areas where the Mi TV Stick lacks in selling points. For example, the smaller Android TV device does not come with 4K support and instead, caps out at 1080p. Although there has been some rumors that additional variants might be released, possibly included a 4K option.
In addition, the Mi TV Stick also comes running on Android 9 which could prove to be a concern in its own right. While that is the same version currently powering the company’s Mi Box S, as well as other Android TV players, Xiaomi does not have the best track record with rolling out reliable major Android TV updates.