(Pocket-lint) - Apple's new TV service has launched - Apple TV+ - offering a range of new and exclusive content to subscribers as Apple moves to offer more content services.
Apple is going to be taking on the likes of Netflix, Amazon Video and Disney+ in the future, looking to get you to subscribe to its service - but you'll also be able to access Apple TV+ on a wide range of platforms.
Access through Apple devices is easy enough - just head to the Apple TV app on your iPad, iPhone or Mac - but you'll also be able to access it through smart TVs and, importantly, a range of streaming boxes.
While your TV probably won't offer the app any time soon - unless you have the latest Samsung TV - the best way to get access to Apple's content is going to be via Roku or Amazon's Fire TV Stick where the Apple TV app is available.
The cheapest route to Apple TV+
The cheapest way to get Apple TV+ on your TV is with either the Roku Express or the Amazon Fire TV Stick. Both these devices are affordable, but only support up to 1080p streaming and there's no support for HDR.
If you're connecting to a TV that only supports Full HD then that's no problem, you won't be missing out, making either of these devices a great choice for a second TV or a bedroom TV. The Roku Express is a small box that connects via cable to your TV's HDMI input.
It comes with an IR remote - so you need line of sight - but it's very easy to navigate the interface and there's support for a wide range of TV services beyond Apple TV - Netflix, Amazon Video, BBC iPlayer, Now TV, Hulu, HBO Now and more depending on your region.
Alternatively, the Amazon Fire TV Stick plugs straight into your TV giving you access to a wide range of services. Naturally it's designed for Amazon's content first, but also supports Netflix, Apple TV and a lot more.
Coming from Amazon it supports Alexa too, meaning you can use voice searching right from the remote.
How to get the best quality Apple TV+ on your TV
If you're more interested in taking advantage of Apple's support for 4K HDR content, then you'll need something a little more advanced, although not much more expensive. While Apple TV 4K might seem like the obvious choice, you can get access to the TV services for much less money.
Remember that you not only get access to Apple TV+ through the Apple TV app - but all the iTunes TV content you may have purchased in the past too.
The Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K is the obvious choice for those wanting the best quality from Apple TV but without paying more than you need to. This streaming stick is very similar to the Fire TV Stick above, but it supports 4K resolutions and it supports Dolby Vision HDR - which Apple TV also offers.
Otherwise the experience is very much the same, with a full range of services (Netflix and Amazon both offer Dolby Vision too), but note that you need to have a TV that supports Dolby Vision if that's what you want to watch.
If you don't have a Dolby Vision TV and have no intention of buying one, then the Roku Streaming Stick+ is a fantastic alternative. It supports 4K HDR so your content will still look great and we've always been impressed with the performance of this device. We suspect that most 4K TV owners will choose the Roku.
There's also the Roku Premiere that's a little cheaper than the Streaming Stick+, but we prefer to have the stick tucked away behind the TV and out of sight.
Those are the cheapest ways to get Apple TV+ on your TV, whether it's a small Full HD TV, or if you want to go for the best quality that the service will offer.