Xiaomi Mi Box Officially Released for Under $70

After a week of it being an open secret that the Mi Box was coming out due to WalMart stores selling them early – the Xiaomi Android TV box was officially released on October 4. This $69 device brings you 4K streaming with HDR support, access to Google Music, the Google Play Store, Google Games, and Netflix. With the Android TV market largely being limited to success stories like the gaming-centric Shield TV, and the far less-powerful Amazon Fire TV, there hasn’t been something that quite hit the sweet spot. The Fire TV has been hurt by only having the Amazon Appstore officially supported, while the Mi Box can have any appstore you want sideloaded to it – a bit like an OUYA, only this has more horsepower and can run games like Real Racing 3 natively without any issues.

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We’ve had a Mi Box for a few days now, and will be posting a few in-depth pieces on it throughout the week. For $69, the device is a no-brainer for anyone looking to get a spare streaming box for a guest room or for traveling. Hotel cable selection is sub-par, and it’s unlikely that you’ll want to have to plug your laptop into the TV to enjoy programming. A device like this is far more portable – and it supports a wide range of Bluetooth pads including OUYA controllers, and it should theoretically work fine with the new Bluetooth-enabled Xbox One controllers as well.

20161003230913Those interested in Google Casting will be glad to know that you can get that with this device too – and it even has a voice-controlled remote too. It includes 8GB of on-board storage, which you can expand via a USB thumb drive or hard drive and even make that the primary drive. You do have to be careful with that though as you can’t move things around with ease doing that – but you can’t send apps to the USB drive without rooting the device, so it’s a tradeoff. For $70, it’s a heck of a deal when you consider that a Fire TV Stick and Chromecast are $40 and $35 respectively, and this trounces them. WalMart stores should officially be selling them, and the device will be available later this month on WalMart.com as well.