When you look at this picture, what do you call it? Hint…it probably depends on where you’re from.
Where I am in North America, these devices are normally called Streaming devices or Android Streaming Media players . Sometimes, they’re mistakenly called Roku boxes, even though they may be made by Amazon, Apple or one of the many other tv boxes manufacturers. Let me give you an example of something similar. Depending on what part of the country you’re in, you call that sugary, carbonated beverage Pop, Soda or even Coke (even when it’s not Coke). So, unless it’s actually a Roku that you’re talking about, please don’t call it a Roku box. It can create confusion for you and the person who you’re talking to.
In Europe, they’re generally called Kodi boxes due to the popularity of installing Kodi and some of the streaming addons that are available. They can also be called IPTV boxes because it’s much easier to find an Internet Protocol TV (IPTV) service on that side of the Atlantic than here in the US. To put it simply, IPTV is a way to get live TV over the Internet.
If you’re in Asia, then chances are you’ve heard them called TV boxes. Personally, I prefer calling them TV boxes. It is a more generic term, sure, but the device can do so many things that it just makes more sense.
One last thing. You can also see the term mini-PC. TV boxes can certainly be considered a mini-PC, but I think that lumps them into a category that they don’t quite belong in. A mini-PC can also include any small-format computer like an Intel NUC (Next Unit of Computing). They can usually do everything that your desktop PC or laptop can do. Some TV boxes can replace your desktop, but they’re the exception, rather than the rule.