While previous versions of Apple's TV box were not particularly smart compared to its iOS devices, the new one looks like the product many people have been waiting for. Okay, so it's not an actual Apple television and it's perhaps arriving a bit too late to the party what with the number of already-smart TVs that are already out there, but it is the next best thing.
So how does it compare with all of the other TV streaming options out there from the other big names?
Well if there's one thing that's changed with the new Apple TV it's the interface (it sure isn't its physical appearance which is still a boring black box). When it hits the shelves it'll be running a brand new operating system called tvOS - clearly based on iOS 9 but with some Mac OS elements thrown in.
While the current Apple TV rather enthusiastically offers you iTunes-based content above all others, tvOS actually integrates all your other apps in a more helpful way.
It's similar to what Roku 3 already offers but a lot more slick.
So you can search for a film and it'll tell you what your options are - so while it'll want you to buy a download from the iTunes Store preferable, it'll also tell you if you can watch for free in Netflix or Amazon Prime if you subscribe to those services.
This is clearly a lightyears ahead of all of the other devices here. Chromecast doesn't actually have a GUI as it's designed so you can simply 'throw' content at your TV from your phone or tablet. Roku 3 and Amazon Fire TV are both very basic in comparison - but then they're also very simple. They're basic systems designed to show you content and not put anything in the way, while Apple TV will show you sports results and weather updates while you're watching a movie and it will always want to upsell you.
It feels almost unfair to compare the other devices against Apple TV here, because it's not even available until October while the others have all been out for a long time. Still though, there are the current players so what can you do?
Winner: the new Apple TV is a long way ahead on this one
We're getting the new Apple TV's best features out of the way early on this one because again, the new box's remote control is a long way ahead of the other options.
Fans of Chromecast might object to this notion because what can be better than just using your phone as a remote control? Roku 3 is also fully controllable from your smartphone but it's a straight swap - the touch interface on your phone can't do anything the physical remote doesn't already do. We'd have to agree on the whole, but equally the things you can do with Apple's new hardware far exceeds what's possible with Chromecast.
The Roku's hardware remote is probably what you could describe as the 'worst', but in its favour is its simplicity and the fact that it's not trying to be clever - it's just trying to help you use the box.
The Amazon effort does have a microphone included so you can use voice to control certain functions and it is pretty smart but is it a match for Apple's new one? Nope.
With a touch panel and Siri activation baked into the new tvOS, the remote looks seriously impressive. Is this really necessary though? Do you really need a remote control like this? We really don't think so.
It's about the content, yo. But ultimately the new Apple TV remote does exactly the same stuff as all the others plus a hell of a lot more, so purely on that basis it's clearly the winner in this section.
Winner: the new Apple TV's remote is way out in front
Apps and Games
This is where things start to get a bit more complicated. The new tvOS is brand spanking new and built with apps and gaming at its heart. Netflix is confirmed and you can be sure that any apps you can use on your iPhone you'll be able to get up and running on Apple TV, even if it is in a slightly different form.
Roku 3 has its apps as well, though, remember. Netflix, Plex, Spotify and many many more are very easy to set up and use. And that's the real beauty of the Roku 3 - it's simple and it's easy - it's almost Apple-like in that way.
The new Apple TV by comparison looks quite complicated and it's not inconceivable that many people might find it hard to get the hang of.
Amazon Fire TV also has apps, and like Apple TV it puts its own stuff at the forefront. That's the main issue with all things Amazon these days - it's far too aggressive at forcing its own content down your throat. The Fire does at least double as a mini games console but to get the most out of it you're going to need to stump up for the additional control pad.
Chromecast clearly doesn't have apps as it's a conduit for content, but again, that's part of its charm.
Winner: again the new Apple TV has this one sewn up
OK so this is where the pendulum definitely starts to shift away from Apple.
Is it better for content than all of the others? Well that depends which ecosystems you've invested yourself in, but in general while it's obviously going to be good, it's not going to be that good. It's unlikely that Plex will work so playing any of your own content that's not already iOS-compatible is almost certainly off the table.
And the real killer is that the rumoured Apple streaming service to rival Netflix is nowhere to be seen. But at the same time, your obvious Netflix, iTunes, HBO Go, BBC iPlayer options are all present and correct...
Meanwhile, the options looks quite similar on the Amazon Fire TV, and Chromecast can handle content from lots of different sources as well. When the new Apple TV launches it could arrive with some truly exciting new apps but until that's confirmed, we're calling this one a tie.
Winner: on content alone, all these options are great in their own way
And this is where the new Apple TV comes slightly unstuck. OK, only very slightly. But it's the newest and most expensive option on this list and that's going to count against it when you're judging products by price.
Chromecast is the real winner here - it costs $30/£30 and that's truly amazing.
For an economical way of turning your dumb TV into a smart TV, it simply cannot be beaten. The Fire TV stick is also super economical, costing just $39 or so, it's another option that offers stunning value for money.
Particularly when you consider that the Roku 3 is still priced at close to $100/£70 and the Apple TV is due to weigh in at $149/$199.
Winner: Chromecast wins for its incredible value for money - buy one now
OK this one really is easy. The new Apple TV is by far the most advanced smart TV box of the lot and you'd expect that - it's far more ambitious than the others, it's so brand new it's not out for another month, and it's also a great deal more expensive.
You could buy a Chromecast for yourself and one each for four mates for the same price as the bottom-end new Apple TV and that's a big deal.
On the early evidence though it looks like it could be worth it if you're an 'Apple person'. If you're not an iTunes user though, and you don't have an iPhone, this thing is going to be a hard sell.
Do you really want to use Siri to control your TV though? We have our doubts - we certainly don't want to.
And do you want to use this as a games console instead of a PS4? Again, that's up for debate.
For us they look like features no one will ever use but ultimately you can't deny that the new Apple TV is a very impressive new product with some truly advanced new features that go way beyond what the other devices are capable of.
Winner: the new Apple TV is the king of the living room but we'd still choose the Chromecast