A new Android TV device has appeared in the US overnight. Air TV Mini promises to occupy a HDMI input on your TV but no bench space, with a small dongle device that’ll hang out the back, and has some interesting ideas about live TV.
Your USD$80 gets you a modestly-powered device with 2GB RAM, 8GB storage and 4K video output. There’s a remote in the box that has buttons for Google Assistant, Netflix and Sling. That last one’s interesting.
There’s no antenna input for broadcast live TV, but if you’re connecting the device to a TV that might not be very important to you. If your TV doesn’t have an antenna connection though, you can use your own Air TV box (also USD$80) to stream live TV over your home network to the Mini or you can use a Sling subscription (if you’re in the USA). In Australia, you might use Freeview FV if you can get it onto the device.
Being an Android TV device, this can replace your Chromecast (Ultra, even) as it’s got the receiver software built-in, and it’s a 4K device. You can also connect Bluetooth controllers to it for gaming, etc. It does look like there’s some Sling customisation of the home screen going on, but you can probably ignore it and go for other apps.
The tie-in with the main Air TV device or Sling subscription service makes it unlikely the Air TV Mini will head outside the US in its current form, but you could likely import one via a freight forwarder if you’re so inclined.