There's certainly no shortage of Android-powered TV sticks designed to stream all sorts of content to the big-screen.
Typically, Android-powered TV sticks are powered by dual-core ARM processors, with one of the most popular SoCs manufactured by Allwinner. As you may recall, we previously reported that Allwinner was working on a new quad-core processor known as the A31.
The SoC is based on an ARM Cortex-A7 processor paired with a PowerVR SGX 544 GPU, which has now been crammed inside of a small Android TV stick. Additional hardware specs include 2 GB of RAM, 8 GB of storage, integrated Wi-Fi, a pair of mini USB ports, a full-size USB port, and a reset button. The device runs Android 4.1 with an HDMI adapter built into one end.
Recently, GeekBuying managed to obtain a version of the device in pre-release form for benchmarking purposes.
The processor scored 10,915 points in the AnTuTu benchmark, which is reportedly pretty close to what you would expect performance-wise from a device running an Nvidia Tegra 3 processor. The A31 packing TV stick also reportedly supports 4K video playback. You might think being able to handle 4K video playback means you would get at least full HD resolution, but you don't right out-of-the-box. To be sure, the TV stick reportedly supports only 1280 x 720 resolution video (right out-of-the-box) with no option for full HD. The holdup? The native software included with the device.
In addition, GeekBuying reports that the test unit randomly rebooted a few times, while full HD resolution video playback using the XBMC Media Center app for Android was said to have made the Android TV stick "struggle."
Hopefully, things will run smoother on the final version of the Android TV stick, which can now be pre-ordered for $101.