Verizon (Engadget’s former parent company) isn’t just relying on no-frills media players to push its Stream TV platform. The carrier has unveiled the Stream TV Soundbar (shown below) and Stream TV Soundbar Pro (at top), both of which mate Android TV with Bang & Olufsen’s audio know-how and some high-end features to match. All of them include Dolby Atmos surround sound and content-sensitive sound field selection — it’s just a question of how much B&O influence you want.
The base Stream TV Soundbar costs $400 with five speakers “tuned” by B&O as well as two HDMI ports. Step up to the $1,000 Soundbar Pro and you’ll get nine B&O speakers, a third HDMI port and a B&O-designed profile. Both run the same Stream TV interface with similar software features (including Chromecast streaming and the Google Play Store), so it really comes down to your budget and desire for Danish audio.
Both soundbars are available solely through Verizon as of today (December 1st). They face stiff competition. On top of direct rivals like JBL’s Link Bar, you can find plenty of not-quite-so-connected soundbars like the Sonos Arc and Beam or Sony’s HT-A5000. Verizon’s bars make the most sense if you’re already shopping the company’s store, unimpressed with your immediately available alternatives or just want a (relatively) inexpensive way to get B&O sound into your living room.
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