For a while now I’ve been thinking of purchasing an Android Stick computer to use it as a media center PC on my TV. I didn’t want to build a full PC and also didn’t want to pay for Virgin Media or Sky TV just to get on demand TV. Also, I liked the idea of getting YouTube and Ted talks on my TV.
However, last week I saw an online news article stating the Sky Now TV box was coming to high street stores like Currys and John Lewis. I read the article, it said it had iPlayer, and demand five, and only cost £9.99. What’s the catch??? Do you need to subscribe to something? It looks like you might, they talk a lot about Sky Movies and Sky Sports packages coming bundles with it, but it turns out you don’t need to buy any bundle at all if you just want iPlayer and the other non-subscription features. So I went online to: https://shop.nowtv.com/ and bought one.
It took about five days to arrive. It arrived with this in the box:
- Now TV Box (it’s tiny!)
- Remote Control
- Power Supply
- Batteries for Remote
- HDMI Cable (excellent value!)
Setting it up:
- Plug in power supply to wall and box
- Plug HDMI into TV and box
- Switch TV to HDMI and follow on screen instructions
(You might think I missed putting the batteries in the remote but mine were already in it).
Once on your HDMI input, the on scree instructions are very straight forward and ask for your wi-fi network settings and then ask you to log in using you Now TV account
TOP-TIP!!! You do not need to register for a free trial on the Now TV webpage, once you’ve selected your username and password, the page then changes to selecting a package. At this point, you can stop, as you now have an account, just enter the username and password into your Now TV box and you’ll be fine. Sky won’t like me telling you this but I wanted to test the box out before entering any payment details for anything that may charge me a month later.
Built in channels are:
You can add to these very easily, select the Roku store channel and you have a selection of additional channels to install, such as Ted Talks, Flixter, Spotify, Facebook and several more, currently ITV Player and 4od are not available but they are rumored to be in the works.Now TV
First off….it’s £9.99. So don’t expect amazing quality that you’re going to boast about to your friends. I’m personally running it on a 28 inch TV and it’s fine, it runs at 720p with good quality stereo sound and looks great.
It may not surprise you to learn that people have been busy looking for ways to add extra features to this box via software. A quick search on YouTube will bring up a video showing you how to install Plex on it. This will allow you to do cool things like watching videos or picture you have on computers around the house, which if you’ve ripped any of your DVD’s to your PC like I have, is really cool. You can also browse and listen to your iTunes collection using the Plex channel too.
Can I watch YouTube? Yes! You can! (if you have an Android phone)
Simple install the Playto channel from the Roku store, then download the Playto app from the Android Play Store and you can stream online content to the Now TV box, including YouTube, you can sign into your YouTube account and play your subscriptions even!
Use your phone as a remote!
Download a Roku remote app on your Android phone and you can use this to control the Now TV box instead of using the one it comes with (note, this is really only for you if you’re too lazy to get off the sofa to use the real remote).
Buy it. It can do iPlayer, Demand Five, Ted Talks, Spotify, YouTube, Stream media from your PC, takes up no space at all! Comes with everything you need. And it’s only £9.99 including delivery!!!
Go buy it, right, now.