A consumer’s guide to streaming TV devices

streamingWhen Amazon released its Fire TV system this month, it propelled the company into the increasingly competitive marketplace of devices that stream Web content into the living room.

The set-top box now competes with Apple, Google and Samsung, as well as early innovator Roku and even the gaming world’s top consoles for the eyeballs of people who stream services like Netflix, Hulu and YouTube onto their televisions.

These devices are relatively new innovations: Roku first announced a simple Netflix-streaming box in 2008. But in recent years, more and more people have begun using devices that harness the Internet’s bountiful offerings and send them, usually via Wi-Fi, to a TV set.

According to Experian, almost half of all U.S. adults and 67% of young adults now watch streamed or downloaded video at least once a week.  More