With so many new televisions having built-in smart capabilities, even in the budget segment, you might think there’s not much of a need for a streaming device anymore. However, many people are still using older non-smart TVs, smart TVs with limited capabilities, or a smart interface that doesn’t work as well as before. In such cases, a good streaming device will let you enjoy the benefits of up-to-date smart functionality without having to upgrade your functional and expensive television.
One of the latest affordable streaming devices in India realme 4k smart google tv stick, which costs Rs. 3,499. With the small form factor, Ultra-HD and HDR streaming capabilities, and Google TV user interface, it is one of the most attractive options you can buy for less than Rs. 5,000 now. Does it live up to the expectations? Find out in this review.
Realme 4K Smart Google TV Stick Design and Specifications
Likes very much Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K And mi tv stickThe Realme 4K Smart Google TV Stick is a small, plain device that plugs directly into the HDMI port on your TV and will hopefully be out of sight for the rest of its life.
The Streaming Stick has an HDMI plug and a Micro-USB port for power, and comes with a USB cable and wall adapter for you to plug it in. I was able to directly power the Realme TV Stick using the USB port on my TV. review, but this meant that it would take a few seconds for the device to boot up after the TV was turned on. It is recommended to use a wall adapter when possible for a stable power supply independent of the TV.
The sale package also includes an HDMI extender, remote control, and AAA battery to power the remote. While the device should be able to plug directly into most TVs, the extender can help in some situations, such as when the TV is wall-mounted and space is limited in the back, or if the ports are too close to each other. The stick is quite wide.
The Realme 4K Smart Google TV Stick supports HDMI 2.1 and can stream content up to Ultra-HD resolution at 60Hz. Additionally, it can handle high dynamic range content up to HDR10+ format. There is no Dolby Vision HDR, but Dolby Audio is supported. The device is powered by a quad-core CPU, and packs 2GB of RAM and 8GB of internal storage for apps and app data. Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5 have been used for connectivity in this.
realme 4k smart google tv stick remote and features
Like most standalone streaming devices, the Realme 4K Smart Google TV Stick comes with a full Bluetooth remote. It’s very similar to the remote that ships with realme smart tv Range, with controls to navigate the interface, adjust volume and settings, and hotkeys for Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, YouTube, and YouTube Music. The remote is powered by two AAA batteries.
The Realme 4K Smart Google TV Stick has HDMI CEC support, and it works well for me when used with Hisense Android TV. While I was able to use the Hisense remote to control the Realme TV Stick for most tasks, the Home key was a notable exception; Pressing it went back to the television’s home screen instead of the realme device’s home screen, which made it a little more difficult to navigate when not using the realme remote.
The Realme 4K Smart Google TV Stick also comes with built-in Google Chromecast and Google Assistant functionality. The voice assistant was fully equipped and retrieved personal information, specific content from on-device apps, and more. The microphone on the remote worked well enough for the device to accurately interpret voice commands.
realme 4k smart google tv stick software and performance
The most striking feature of the Realme 4K Smart Google TV Stick is its software; As far as I am aware, this is the first streaming device in India to run on the Google TV user interface, which was launched alongside it. Chromecast with Google TV, Google Chromecast is not yet officially sold in India. The user interface works on top of Android TV, with the Realme TV Stick running Android version 11. There’s also access to the Google Play Store for Android TV, which lets users install over 5,000 apps optimized for larger screens.
There are many popular apps preinstalled including Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+ Hotstar, YouTube, and various Indian streaming services including MX Player, Alt Balaji, ZEE5, Sun Next, and Sony Liv. Usefully, you can uninstall most of these apps if you don’t need them. The hotkeys on the remote work as expected to launch apps on the interface. The apps themselves are just like I’ve seen on Android TV devices; Google TV easily changes the way the interface looks and the way you access apps and content.
Google TV differs significantly from the stock Android TV user interface as it puts content at the fore and provides curation and recommendations that help you quickly pick something to watch. Of course, as before, you can always jump straight to specific apps if you already know what you want. It is similar to Xiaomi’s PatchWall user interface, though the curation is significantly less India-centric and more general in nature.
There are large banners for content, curated lists for categories, the ability to mark specific movies and TV shows as part of your ‘watching list’, and easy guidance for accessing the content to watch. While the system will try to suggest a way to stream the content for free, in some cases you may be taken to Google Play – to rent a movie or buy a title. You can pause and continue watching content from various apps directly through the Google TV user interface.
A key aspect of Google TV is its integration with various streaming services, in which the system detects which services you have installed and offers content recommendations based on that. I found suggestions for Amazon Prime Video, Disney+ Hotstar, Apple TV and MX Player. Oddly, Netflix wasn’t integrated into the system, so I didn’t see any curation that included Netflix content. Of course, I could just launch the Netflix app and watch whatever I wanted, but this lack of integration in India was a bit of a letdown.
Apart from the user interface, the settings and other menus also have a redesigned look. However, the operating system is still Android TV at its core, and works exactly the same, even with the Google Play Store looking practically the same as TVs and streaming devices with stock Android TVs.
The device itself was responsive and worked as expected for me; While it wasn’t an exceptionally quick or smooth experience, it certainly wasn’t slow or short. However, I experienced some issues with HDR streaming; For example, I couldn’t play HDR content at Ultra-HD at 60Hz on two TVs I tried with the Realme TV Stick. Reducing the frame rate to 30Hz on Ultra-HD fixed it, but it’s definitely a bug that Realme should look into and try to fix with a software update.
It’s also worth noting that my review unit stopped working properly shortly after completing the testing process, but before the publication of this review; The user interface still failed to load or access the Settings menu when I tried the device on three different TVs. I was able to complete this review using the second unit shipped by Realme, but the reason for the problem with the first unit remains unknown.
The Realme 4K Smart Google TV Stick is unique in that it provides access to the Google TV user interface which is still very unusual. However, in most other ways, it’s a simple streaming device, even for the price. Although you get a convenient form factor, Ultra-HD streaming, and HDR 10+ support, the lack of Dolby Vision is a bit disappointing. Google TV’s lack of Netflix integration for recommendations in India is also worth pointing out here, though it’s not the fault of the Realme TV Stick itself.
It is worth considering as an alternative to this tool Mi Box 4K Which has similar capabilities, if the more convenient form factor of the Realme device is attractive. However, if you can stretch your budget a bit, Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K remains our top pick in the segment thanks to Dolby Vision support, and you can also consider the new Fire TV Stick 4K Max,
Price: Rupee. 3,499
- Android TV 11 with Google TV UI
- convenient form factor
- Ultra-HD and HDR streaming at a good price
- no dolby vision
- some bug in software
Rating (out of 10):
Design and Specification: 8
value of money: 8
in totality: 8