Smart TV Vs. IPTV Set Top Box – Which is Better?

Smart TV Vs. IPTV Set Top Box

With technological innovations becoming more affordable, standard home equipment like Smart TVs is more accessible to the masses.

You can install your favorite applications on your TV and consume a plethora of content without requiring a third-party agent. The deal becomes sweeter as many manufacturers offer Smart TVs at different price points, catering to the needs of varied users.

Smart TV vs IPTV Set Top Box

However, Smart TVs often need more features and deliver the experiences you can expect from a dedicated client.

That’s where a dedicated device like an IPTV set-top box can add a whole new flavor to your viewing experience.

This article will help you understand the difference between a Smart TV and an IPTV set-top box and make an informed decision.

But first, let’s get a brief insight into how these devices operate.

What Is A Smart TV?

A Smart TV is the latest generation of standard television sets equipped with an inbuilt operating system. These TVs feature a processor, built-in memory for app installation, and Wi-Fi or Ethernet support for internet connectivity.

smart tv

You can download apps from the Android store or side-load from other sources to enjoy your favorite apps. The primary benefit of using a Smart TV is its simplicity, as it does not require a dedicated client or STB to stream content.

In short, you must connect your TV to the internet and enjoy your content.

What Is An IPTV Set Top Box?

An IPTV set-top box is a dedicated device with many features and specialized controls. You can use these devices to stream your favorite content from top IPTV providers and enjoy the best IPTV service on your television.

These devices also have various useful features like ‘Live Recording,’ allowing users to record live events to uplift personalized viewing. Furthermore, you can connect an IPTV STB to any television and enjoy the services of the best IPTV provider.

Smart TV and IPTV Set Top Box – Similarities

Internet is gradually becoming the preferred medium for televised content delivery, connecting the dots between a Smart TV and an IPTV STB.

IPTV set top box

As mentioned earlier, Smart TVs and IPTV STBs require the internet to operate and deliver content. So, both these platforms have the internet as their base.

Besides internet connectivity, both platforms have inbuilt operating systems that allow users to control, navigate, and consume content with built-in functionalities.

Smart TV vs. IPTV Set Top Box – Which is Better?

Although people might consider Smart TVs a compelling solution, there are some areas where a dedicated STB outshines the former.

Here are the differences that make an IPTV set-top box more alluring than a Smart TV.

No Limitations (TV models)

As expected, internet connectivity is only for some TV models, as you have to purchase a Smart model to enjoy this service. Although you can find cheaper options in the Smart category, you often miss out on features due to cost-cutting.

On the other hand, IPTV set-top boxes work with any TV model as long as you have the connectivity ports to connect your STB. In short, IPTV STBs offer users more convenience as they can enjoy content from their favorite IPTV provider without changing their TV sets.

Software Updates (Bug Fixes)

Unlike Smart TVs that often fail to provide scheduled software updates, IPTV STBs offer a more reliable solution.

For instance, if users report a bug, an IPTV provider can fix the issue by releasing a software update. This easy-to-release firmware update makes IPTV STBs more reliable and up-to-date Smart TVs.

On the other hand, Smart TVs run on proprietary software, which can be hard to update or fix in most cases.

4K Support

Consuming your content on a 4K resolution has become a basic necessity, and sadly many Smart TVs fail to deliver on this aspect.

This limitation is more evident in the budget category as most Smart TVs offer lower resolutions as a price-cutting measure.

IPTV set-top boxes come with inbuilt support for 4K resolution and allow consumers to experience their content. In short, you must buy IPTV services from a reliable IPTV provider and enjoy your favorite shows in 4K resolution.

New Features

Since IPTV STBs get regular updates, you can implement newer features to your viewing experience. Furthermore, since these features come with your STB, you can experience these features on any TV model.

Sadly, Smart TVs fail to implement these updates, especially in the budget category.

3rd Party Integration

Although Smart TVs allow 3rd party integration, these solutions are often limited to the higher end of the spectrum. In other words, you may not have 3rd party integration if your TV falls in the budget category.

On the other hand, IPTV set-top boxes have centralized support, so getting 3rd party solutions is fully available to the users.

OS Control

OS control is one of the most significant advantages of using a dedicated IPTV set-top box. Since IPTV STBs offer complete remote access, including logs and diagnostics, users can customize their content according to their needs.

These features are not available or limited with Smart TVs, making them unreliable in the long run.

DRM availability

Digital Rights Management is a crucial aspect of IPTV, making it the preferred choice for companies. Since IPTV providers offer DRM management on their set-top boxes, it can help an organization protect its content from unauthorized use.

Although Smart TVs also allow these features, manufacturers may or may not include DRM availability on their Smart TVs.


Although Smart TVs have become standard equipment in most homes, millions still employ the services of a standard TV set. IPTV set-top boxes cater to these users who want to experience their favorite content without breaking the bank.

In short, purchasing an IPTV set-top box and buying IPTV online if you have a standard TV set is wise.

Smart TV vs. IPTV Set Top Box – Final Thoughts

Although installing a dedicated IPTV set-top box may require more cables, it is undoubtedly a better choice than purchasing a Smart TV.

You can pair the IPTV set-top box with a reliable IPTV service like Roomba TV; you’ll have unlimited entertainment at your fingertips. Roomba TV is the best IPTV provider to watch TV online, like movies, sports streaming, TV shows, etc.

Get an IPTV subscription on Roomba TV and enjoy all the latest videos on demand. Roomba TV also offers IPTV reselling programs where you can become an IPTV reseller for them.

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