Is Apple TV the best TV streaming solution?

I've been in the market looking around for a good tv streaming set-top that i can use in my room. I have verizon FiOS in my house, living room only, and i dont really watch enough tv to warrant another bulky set top box cluttering my bedroom.

so i was thinking going with the apple TV since im somewhat already fairly involved with their ecosystem –i currently own a 4S and a MBP, planning on getting the ipad mini if its at a reasonable price– so i think airplay will be a huge incentive. but i want to get some opinions, im not buying it anytime soon since im thinking of picking up a new TV first.

my key questions are:

are there any better competitors to the Apple TV?

will HBOGO ever be available on it?

will i be able to airplay HBOGO from my iphone and or ipad?

will i be able to use my WatchESPN app and airplay to apple tv?

so basically, i want to be sure i can watch HBO and ESPN.