Walmart’s $30 Streaming Stick Isn’t Bad for the Price

Entry level 4K streaming without all the dazzle

Key Takeaways

  • Walmart has released its onn.-branded 4K streaming device.
  • The new streaming box retails for just $30 and runs on Android TV.
  • Despite its low cost, it offers a stable streaming experience, albeit slightly more limited than other streaming options out there.
Walmart's Onn-branded 4K Tv streaming device.

Walmart

Despite looking generic and extremely cheap, Walmart’s $30 streaming device delivers a decent 4K streaming experience for those who want entertainment at a discount.

I wasn’t expecting much out of Walmart’s onn.-branded streaming device. Sure, other companies have managed to deliver fairly decent streaming systems for a little above that $30 price tag, but Walmart’s previous attempts to break into tech haven’t always turned out for the best. Still, I was intrigued. For the longest time, Roku has been my go-to streaming setup, just because I like the layout and it offers everything I need in one place. Could Walmart deliver something just as good for less?

Well, not quite. But, the Walmart streaming device isn’t bad, especially if you’re just looking for something that can deliver 4K without costing you a lot of money.

Plain and Simple

The first thing I noticed about Walmart’s streamer is the overall plainness of the box and the control. It utilizes Google’s generic Android TV remote, which fits nicely with the entire setup’s plain black box.

Setting it all up is easy. Plug in a few cables and connect it to your TV before booting it up. I had zero issues getting logged into my accounts, and if you’ve ever used an Android TV device, you’ll feel right at home with the interface.

I did run into a problem, though, setting up the remote to control my television. The remote contains several buttons that let you power your TV on and off and control the volume and other adjustments. I had a tough time finding my TV in the list of options, and when I did manage to find a code that worked, it ended up freezing the whole setup and causing the system to reboot completely. 

Another weird thing—more strange design than an outright problem—is how the device itself is designed. Instead of featuring the HDMI and power ports on the back, Walmart’s streaming device has the power cable on the front and the HDMI cable on the opposite side. It makes it kind of difficult to set up in an entertainment center. If you’re a stickler for cables hanging out and being unruly, you’re probably not going to like the overall design.

This, of course, isn’t a completely unlikely issue when it comes to setbox streamers like this, and I’ve experienced similar problems in the past when setting up new Roku or Amazon Fire TV devices.

Entertainment Fulfilled

Hardware issues aside, the onn. streaming box does exactly what it sets out to do. The 4K picture is decent and offers a stable FPS (frames per second) even throughout more intense fight scenes.

Since it uses Android TV, you also have access to pretty much every streaming app you could want, including Netflix, HBO Max, YouTube, and YouTube TV, and so on. Many of these also come pre-installed, so you won’t have to go out of your way to download them.

The Onn.-branded remote for the Walmart 4K streaming device.

Walmart

The other handy thing about the device using Android TV is access to tons of games you can play on your living room TV—or on whatever TV you set it up. The system on a chip (SoC) isn’t the best out there, but it does offer a solid experience for most of the games you’ll find on Android TV, especially if they’re already well optimized to run on these lower-end specs.

If you’re expecting something that plays games as well as more advanced Android TV boxes, though, you’re going to be disappointed. But, for $30, the onn. streamer does a good enough job to justify the price.

There really isn’t anything that makes Walmart’s streaming device stand out above the rest, even at $30. Sure, it offers a stable enough 4K picture, and games run well enough, but if you want to embrace Android TV, you’re better off going with more advanced options out there—and there are plenty of other options to choose from.

Even the more expensive Android TV devices are worth the cost, as they bring more power to your television and allow you to check out heartier games and other experiences.

Of course, if you’re just looking for something cheap and easy to throw in the guest bedroom for visitors to stream shows and movies from, Walmart’s cheaper cost is going to be appealing. Just don’t expect it to be completely flawless and you’ll probably be happy with your purchase.

Was this page helpful?