Buying a new streaming player is one of the easiest ways to break free from cable, but that doesn’t mean you have to spend a lot. For some players, you won’t even have to spend more than $50 to gain access to all your favorite apps and the benefits that streaming has to offer.
Streaming players open up a world of opportunities with apps now available from all of the major networks and streaming services, including live TV streaming services. Further adding to their appeal, these players are generally easy enough to set up and start using.
Best of all, if you’re not looking to spend too much money, you don’t have to. While many of the streaming players between $50 and $100 will provide more features and upgrades, there are plenty of great streaming players to choose from priced at $50 or less.
Best streaming players under $50
Below are our picks for the best streaming players you can buy today for under $50.
|Onn Google TV 4K Streaming Box||$19.98||Walmart|
|Fire TV Stick Lite||$29.99||Amazon|
|Chromecast with Google TV HD||$29.99||Google Store|
|Roku Express 4K+||$39.99||Roku|
|Fire TV Stick 4K||$49.99||Amazon|
|Chromecast with Google TV 4K||$49.99||Google Store|
|Roku Streaming Stick 4k||$49.99||Roku|
If you are not sure which of these $50 and under streaming players is best for you and your home, below is an overview of each one including pros and cons.
Onn Google TV 4K Streaming Box
The Onn Google TV 4K Streaming Box is a follow up to the popular Onn Android TV 4K UHD Streaming Device, and one of the cheapest devices around.
|✔ Cheap price||– Basic design|
|✔ 4K||– Lacking premium features|
|✔ Google TV||– Better options available|
|✔ Good remote|
Why you should consider Onn Streaming Box
What is probably the very best reason to consider picking up the Onn Google TV 4K Streaming Box is the price. At just $19.98, this is one of the best value streaming players around, and especially considering it is also a 4K streaming player.
Why you might avoid Onn Streaming Box
There is no specific reason why you might avoid the Onn Google TV 4K Streaming Box. However, there are better options out there. While they all do cost more, the additional features or more premium hardware might better suit the needs of some homes.
Onn Streaming Box pricing and availability
The Onn Google TV 4K Streaming Box is available to buy from Walmart and retails for $19.98.
Fire TV Stick Lite
The Fire TV Stick Lite is now the cheapest way to pick up a player that runs on Amazon’s Fire TV operating system, making it a good option for anyone specifically interested in maximizing Prime Video.
|✔ Low price||– Limited to HD|
|✔ Small physical footprint||– Basic remote|
|✔ Fire TV||– No premium features|
|✔ Prime Video||– Better options available|
|✔ Alexa voice remote|
Why you should consider Fire TV Stick Lite
One of the benefits of the Fire TV Stick is how tightly integrated it is with Amazon’s wider ecosystem. If you’re a Prime member and looking to stream Prime Video (or the free Freevee service), then the Fire TV Stick is a great option, as are all of the other Fire TV devices.
Why you might avoid Fire TV Stick Lite
The Fire TV Stick is Amazon’s cheapest streaming player for a reason. For some homes, it may just be too basic overall. For example, $10 more gets you the standard Fire TV Stick which comes with a better remote and Dolby Atmos support.
Fire TV Stick Lite pricing and availability
The Fire TV Stick Lite is available to buy directly from Amazon and retails for $29.99. However, it can often be picked up at a cheaper price.
Roku first made its name through streaming players and so this is a brand that knows what it is doing. The Roku Express is a prime example of this experience, as it comes with a good range of features and supports, and at a low price.
|✔ Cheap player||– Better Roku options available|
|✔ Easy to use||– Limited to HD|
|✔ Wide app support||– Simple remote|
Why you should consider Roku Express
The big selling point with the Roku Express is the price. At under $30, this is the cheapest way to get access to Roku OS, which is one of the most popular streaming platforms in the US.
Why you might avoid Roku Express
The Roku Express is not designed to be the best device on the market and is more suited to those looking for an affordable streaming player. As a result, picture quality is limited to 1080p and Roku only includes a simple remote in the box.
Roku Express pricing and availability
The Roku Express is available to buy from Roku and Amazon and retails for $29.99. However, it can often be found on sale at a cheaper price.
Chromecast with Google TV HD
The Chromecast with Google TV HD is the newest Chromecast from Google, and boasts some major upgrades compared to the older Chromecast models.
|✔ Cheap device||– Remote is small|
|✔ Voice Remote||– Limited to HD|
|✔ Intelligent interface||– Only one color|
|✔ Compact design|
Why you should consider Chromecast with Google TV HD
Similar to the Onn Google TV 4K Streaming Box, the Chromecast with Google TV HD comes running on the Google TV platform and this is arguably one of the main reasons to pick it up. For example, and even though the Onn player is cheaper, this is a device built by Google with Google TV in mind.
Why you might avoid Chromecast with Google TV HD
The Chromecast with Google TV HD is considered an entry-level product and that does mean there are some compromises. Most notably, the picture quality is limited to 1080p.
Chromecast with Google TV HD pricing and availability
The Chromecast with Google TV HD is available to buy from the Google Store as well as many other retailers and typically costs $29.99.
Roku Express 4K+
The Roku Express 4K+ is an upgraded version of the original Roku Express.
|✔ Good price||– Better Rokus available|
|✔ 4K and HDR10+||– Cheaper Express models|
|✔ Easy to use|
|✔ Voice remote with TV controls|
Why you should consider Roku Express 4K+
A major difference between the Express 4K+ and the Express is the inclusion of 4K and HDR support for an improved viewing experience. In addition, the processor inside has also been upgraded which should mean that it runs and performs even better and smoother. The Express 4K+ also comes with a Roku Voice remote (with TV controls) as well.
Why you might avoid Roku Express 4K+
In addition to the Roku Express and the Roku Express 4K+, Roku also sells a standard Roku Express 4K. If you are less interested in the upgraded remote but want a 4K player, then the standard Express 4K might be a better option than the Express 4K+.
Roku Express 4K+ pricing and availability
The Roku Express 4K+ is available to buy from Roku and Amazon and retails for $39.99. However, it can often be found on sale at a cheaper price.
Fire TV Stick 4K
The Fire TV Stick 4K is only one of a number of Fire TV Stick devices that Amazon sells.
|✔ 4K, Dolby Vision||– Cheaper options available|
|✔ Prime Video||– Max only $5 more|
|✔ Alexa Voice Remote|
|✔ Dolby Atmos|
Why you should consider Fire TV Stick 4K
The Fire TV Stick 4K is the cheapest way to buy an Amazon streaming player with support for 4K. In fact, it not only supports 4K but also Doby Vision as well, making it a good option for those that want an upgraded viewing experience at a cheaper price.
Why you might avoid Fire TV Stick 4K
Unless it is on sale at the time, the Fire TV Stick 4K costs $49.99 and that’s right at the maximum for anyone looking for a streaming player under $50. For some homes, they may find they are better off saving money by opting for an even cheaper streaming player.
Fire TV Stick 4K pricing and availability
The Fire TV Stick 4K is available to buy directly from Amazon and retails for $49.99. However, it can often be found on sale at a cheaper price.
Chromecast With Google TV (4K)
The Chromecast with Google TV 4K is older than the HD version, but some of its features might suit buyers more.
|✔ 4K, HDR||– Cheaper model available|
|✔ Voice Remote||– Small remote|
|✔ Google TV||– Older model|
|✔ Compact design|
Why you should consider Chromecast with Google TV 4K
Similar to the other Chromecast on this list, this version comes running on Google TV. However, what makes this one better and worth buying is that it also features 4K HDR and Dolby Vision support. For those wanting the very best picture quality and experience, the most expensive Chromecast with Google TV (4K) is going to be the best option. This model is also available in additional colors compared to the HD version (which is only available in Snow).
Why you might avoid Chromecast with Google TV 4K
The Chromecast with Google TV 4K is now somewhat of an older device. While it is worth buying, if you don’t need 4K then you might be better off buying the HD model and saving on the cost. Even if you do need 4K support then you could save as much as $30 by picking up the Onn Google TV 4K Streaming Box.
Chromecast with Google TV 4K pricing and availability
The Chromecast with Google TV 4K is available to buy from the Google Store as well as other retailers and typically costs $49.99.
Roku Streaming Stick 4K
The Roku Streaming Stick 4K runs on Roku OS is only one of many streaming players sold by Roku.
|✔ 4K, HDR10+, Dolby Vision||– Better Rokus available|
|✔ Long-range wireless|
|✔ Easy to use|
|✔ Compact design|
|✔ Voice remote with TV controls|
Why you should consider Roku Streaming Stick 4K
The Roku Streaming Stick 4K plugs directly into the back of the TV, making it a great option for homes that want a compact device that’s easy to hide away. In addition to its compact design, it also comes loaded with features including support for 4K HDR10+, and Dolby Vision.
Why you might avoid Roku Streaming Stick 4K
If you are looking for a device that costs less than $50, then the Roku Streaming Stick 4K is that, but only barely. Even though it is worth the asking price, some homes may find they are better off buying a different device, and may even save money in the process.
Roku Streaming Stick 4K pricing and availability
The Roku Streaming Stick+ is available to buy from Roku and Amazon and retails for $49.99. However, it can often be found on sale at a cheaper price.