Mecool is a company that makes streaming sticks in the affordable sector, and I was able to review its latest offering. It’s the KD5 streaming stick, and it’s a device to bring you into the streaming stick world at a lower price point. Regardless of how cheap it is, let’s dive in and see if it’s worth the money. While you’re not going to be using this device as you would a phone, the build quality is still an important factor. The actual stick is solidly built. The plastic casing is pretty tough, and there’s a respectable heft to it. It’s not as heavy as the Mecool KD3, but you can tell that it’s built well.
Mecool is attempting to offer a respectable alternative to the Google Chromecast. We’ll examine if its KD3 streaming stick is that rival in our review. Two weeks before to writing this review, Android Headlines received a Mecool KD5 streaming stick. Streaming sticks are one of the most affordable and practical ways to participate in the rapidly expanding market of streaming. Although Google’s Chromecast dominates the market, several businesses also produce their own sticks.
The Mecool KD5 streaming stick comes loaded with Android TV 11
The software story has both good and bad news. If you’re looking for the latest and greatest from Android TV or Google TV, then you’ll be disappointed. The Mecool KD5 comes pre-loaded with Android TV 11. This is a generation behind the most current version, and it’s soon to be two generations behind. You’ll be missing out on the newest features, so you’ll need to be aware of that.
Your home screen comes loaded with curated lists of movies and shows pulled from different streaming services including the ones listed above. When you select a piece of content, it will take you to the app, or it will take you to the Play Store to download it. Not only will it show you recommendations, but the app will also keep track of your watch history across different services. They all live on the same carousel, so you’ll see your Tubi history right next to the movie you didn’t finish on Disney+.
To be honest, a lot of the people who this streaming stick is targeted at won’t really care about the features. This device is more of an entry-level streaming stick. Regardless of the version, you’re still getting a great TV platform. Android TV is one of the most powerful TV platforms out there. You have access to all of the most prominent streaming services on the market like Nexflix, Disney+, Hulu, Tubi, Peacock, Prime Video, YouTube TV, and thousands more.
If you’re looking to have a fully-featured TV operating system, you will be able to have everything you need with Android TV 11. You won’t only be able to control your Mecool KD5 with the included remote, but you’ll also be able to use it to control your TV. When you’re setting up the device, you’ll be able to set it to control the TV as well.
This means that it will be able to change your TV’s volume, change the channel, and power it on and off. Your TV will need to be compatible with the technology, however. The remote has everything you need to control your device including four dedicated hardware buttons for apps. There’s a button for Netflix, YouTube, Prime Video, and the Google Play Store. Along with that, there’s a built-in microphone you can use to speak to the Google Assistant. When it comes to performance, there’s a good side and a bad side. There’s a fair amount of lag while using this device; more than I would like to see, even from a budget device. While navigating through the channels and apps, the device will get caught up sometimes. There were even instances where it would take a few seconds just to go back to the home screen.
Even though the video quality tops at 1080p, it still streams content in HDR10 and HDR10+. The 1080p video should still look great in HDR. Not only that, but this device uses the AV1 video compression codec. With this codec, the videos you watch will consume less data. This is good for people who plan on streaming a lot but want to conserve data. This device is definitely missing some bells and whistles, but that’s not a bad thing when you factor in the price and the targeted audience. This streaming stick is meant to be an entry-level device to cover the basics.
If you’re looking for an inexpensive streaming stick that can give you a decent picture, good software, and a little bit of gaming, then I think that this device is good for you.