EE is mainly known for its mobile network and products, being one of the four mobile network providers in the UK. In 2012 EE took over the broadband services offered by Orange (remember them?) and in 2016 a merger with BT brought more broadband expertise to the table.
In 2014 EE launched EE TV with its own badged TV box, offering streaming services like Netflix, and freeview channels. Users could also record live programs back when streaming wasn’t such a big part of our lives. However in 2019 EE took note of rival services offering 4K content and decided to swap its YouView box to the Apple TV.
EE is one of the four mobile network providers in the UK, the others being: 02, Vodafone and Three. All other providers piggyback on one of these networks to deliver their mobile calls, messages and data. EE was the first company to launch both 4G and 5G services in the UK and are recognised as having the fastest average mobile-data speeds by a fair margin.
This is what you'll get with an EE broadband and TV deal.
All EE TV and broadband packages last 24 months. The different packages are essentially a choice of different speeds, in a range from 17Mbps standard broadband to Fibre Max at an incredibly fast 900Mbps, with various choices in between. If you go to the EE website, you will be asked for your postcode. Once you have entered it, you will see the speeds which are available where you live. The fastest, fibre broadband speeds are by no means available everywhere.
Here are the packages which are potentially available.
As its name suggests, the Apple TV 4K streaming box is a device for watching streamed content on your TV in 4K resolution. That is, content delivered over your broadband connection, from services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+ and of course Apple TV+.
It is particularly nice to use if you are already invested in the Apple ecosystem, for example, it is very easy to set up the Apple TV 4K if you have an iPhone, which will automatically recognise the device and transfer your Apple ID and details over to the Apple TV 4K. You can also type in searches from your phone, or set the colour balance for the TV through a process of holding your phone in front of the screen. It also comes with the Siri remote, which allows you to use the device by speaking to the remote.
Apple TV 4K gives access to hundreds of video and audio streaming services, from big names like Prime Video, Netflix, Apple TV+, Disney+ and Spotify, to more specialised services like Crunchyroll. Games are available through Apple Arcade, which mostly fall into the “casual gamer” category. You will also find iTunes and numerous other apps from the app store. You can also watch live TV through various TV channel’s Apps, like BBC iPlayer and All 4.
4K TV gives you a much crisper, more detailed image than HD TVs can manage. It all comes down to the resolution, or number of pixels shown on the screen. In the case of 720p HD the resolution is 1280 x 720 pixels, Full HD (1080p or 1080i) has a resolution of 1920x1080 pixels. Both will give a decent quality picture on compatibleTVs, but 4K takes it up a notch, with a resolution of 3840x2160, or 4x the resolution of 1080p full HD. All in all you will really notice the difference in the picture quality and detail.
To take advantage of 4K, you will need a 4K TV, and in terms of the Apple TV 4K you will need to find content which is actually streamed in 4K, since bandwidth restrictions are still a bit of a problem, so not everything is available in 4K. You will also want a decently fast broadband connection. Another thing to consider is whether you spend most of your screen time watching streaming services like Netflix or Prime Video. If you do, then simply buying a 4K Smart TV might be your best bet, since the TV itself will have all the apps for watching those services.
One other consideration when streaming 4K content is your broadband’s download speed. You really want to be getting at least 24mbps to stream 4K from Netflix and other services. With plenty of areas in the UK still stuck at around 17Mbps it is well worth checking what your maximum speed is.
One final consideration is that some services require a premium membership to stream in 4K. Netflix being one example.Prime and Apple TV+ on the other hand don’t charge extra for included 4K streaming.
There are quite a few other options out there for combinations of TV and broadband, many of which don’t yet offer 4K streaming through their devices. Since we are making a comparison with EE’s Apple TV 4K, it seems fair to look at other providers offering content in 4K and the ability to view it on their TV boxes. So here are EE’s 3 main competitors in this space.
If you don’t already own a 4K TV, then you will need one to watch content which is streamed in 4K. Luckily there are lots of pretty affordable 4K TVs on the market now. In fact if you buy a 4K Smart TV you may not feel the need to get a TV package with your broadband, since you will be able to use most streaming services on the TV alone.
If you already have a broadband connection in your home that is not from Virgin Media then you will simply be sent a pack containing your router and Apple TV 4K. It will come with easy to follow instructions on how to set it up. Otherwise an engineer may need to connect you.
Packages change all the time. So it’s always worth checking the latest deals available. At the time of writing, its cheapest package which includes the Apple TV 4K, has a download speed of 8-17Mbps. This is worth noting, because despite the inclusion of an Apple TV 4K, these speeds would struggle to stream 4K video.
Yes, the Apple TV 4K can download the apps for most streaming services out there. It will definitely have all the big ones and most, if not all of the smaller ones.
If you are an existing EE mobile customer who signs up to an EE broadband package, you will get a data boost for your phone. The amount of extra data you get depends on which broadband package you go for. The largest data boost at the time of writing is 20GB.