Kogan's new-look HDMI Dongle

Web-only electronics retailer Kogan has revealed a new version of its Smart TV HDMI Dongle, this time with a quad-core CPU for better performance.

There's obviously a lot of interest in dongles that can turn older TVs into smart TVs, as January's review of the original Kogan Smart TV HDMI Dongle is still one of our most most-read articles.

Kogan's back with the Agora Smart TV Quad Core HDMI Dongle. Like its predecessor, the dongle plugs into an HDMI port on a TV that's new enough to include HDMI but too old (or too down-market) to include smart TV capabilities.

It is powered via a mini USB socket that can be connected to a USB port on the TV (if it can deliver sufficient power) or to the included mains adaptor.

Though the hardware has changed, the principles remain the same - this is essentially 'Android on a stick' allowing the use of streaming video, games and other apps on the big screen.

The new dongle uses the Cortex A9 quad-core chip and Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, so hopefully the sluggishness that plagued the original model has been banished. iTWire has requested a sample in the hope of presenting a full review in due course.

The $99 price includes an 'air mouse' remote control. A wireless keyboard and trackpad is a $39 optional extra, but based on our experience with the original model it is practically essential when using apps that require text entry.

Kogan has begun taking orders for the Agora Smart TV Quad Core HDMI Dongle, with shipping expected to start on 22 October.

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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.