We’ve reviewed MECOOL devices in the past, such as their hybrid set-top boxes with DVB-T2 and/or DVB-S2 tuners. But MECOOL HomePlus (aka MECOOL KA1) packs even more features as it serves as both a 4K Android set-top box with a DVB tuner and a smart speaker compatible with Google Assitant.
Based on Amlogic S905X4 Arm Cortex-A55 processor, and equipped with 4GB RAM and 32GB storage, MECOOL HomePlus runs a Google-certified Android TV 11 OS with far-field voice and hands-free TV control.
MECOOL HomePlus (KA1) specifications:
- SoC – Amlogic S905X4 quad-core Arm Cortex-A55 processor with Arm G31 MP2 GPU
- RAM – 4GB LPDDR4
- Storage – 32GB eMMC flash
- Video Output – HDMI 2.1 port with HDCP 2.2
- Video Codes – 4K AV1, VP9, H.265, H.264
- Built-in two linear microphone array
- 2x 5W RMS speakers
- Tuner – RF antenna input for DVB T/T2/C tuner (optional)
- 10/100M Ethernet RJ45 port
- Dual-band 802.11b/g/n/ac WiFi 5 2T2R MIMO WiFi
- Bluetooth 5.0
- USB – 1x USB 3.0 port
- DRM – Google Widevine L1, Microsoft PlayReady
- 4x RGB LEDs
- Physical (privacy) on/off switch for microphone
- 3x Touch buttons for Pause/Play and volume control
- Power Supply – DC 12V/1.5A
- Power Consumption – Pmax <15W, Standby ≤1.5W
- Dimensions – Fits in 200 x 193 x 110 mm volume
The device ships with a power adapter, an HDMI cable, a Bluetooth voice remote control, and a user manual. The ports are quite limited with a single USB port, but that may be enough for most users. The device still works as a smart speaker when the TV is turned off, and like Google Home, it can be used as a smart home controller to dim lights, control your thermostat, and so on.
Most TVs probably already have a DVB tuner, if that’s the standard used in your country, but they may lack features like PVR or local network broadcasting which are supported by MECOOL firmware. The main advantage of this type of device is that it saves space, no need for a smart speaker, a TV box, and a set-top box. The downside is that if it breaks, nothing works.
MECOOL HomePlus is currently sold for $253 to $259 depending on whether you select the OTT or DVB version with the latter adding a DVB T/T2 tuner.
Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later in 2011.