Amazon Fire TV

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Amazon Fire TV
Amazon Fire TV Logo.png
Amazon Fire TV with remote.JPG
Amazon Fire TV with remote (first generation)
DeveloperAmazon
ManufacturerFoxconn
TypeDigital media player, microconsole
Release date
Introductory priceUS$99[5]
Operating systemFire OS 5 "Bellini"[6]
System-on-chip usedQualcomm Snapdragon 600 APQ8064T[7]
MediaTek MT8173C (2nd Gen)
CPUQualcomm Krait 300, quad-core up to 1.7 GHz (1st generation)[7]
dual-core ARM Cortex-A72 up to 2 GHz and dual-core ARM Cortex-A53 up to 1.573 GHz (2nd generation)
Memory2 GB LPDDR2 RAM[7]
Storage8 GB internal[7]
Display1080p and 4K[7]
GraphicsQualcomm Adreno 320 (1st Gen)[7]
PowerVR GX6250 (2nd Gen)[8]
SoundDolby Digital Plus 7.1 surround sound[7]
ConnectivityHDMI, Bluetooth 4.0, Bluetooth 4.1, USB 2.0, Wi-Fi (802.11a/b/g/n/ac), 10/100 Ethernet, Fire game controller[7]
Power5.5 mm DC[7] (6.25 V 2.5 A power adapter[9])
Current firmware6.2.1.2
Dimensions115 × 115 × 17.5 mm (4.53 × 4.53 × 0.69 in)[7]
Mass281 g (9.9 oz)[7]
Related articlesRoku, Apple TV, Chromecast, Ouya
Websiteamazon.com
Amazon Fire TV at a retail store

Amazon Fire TV (stylized as amazon fireTV) is a line of digital media player and microconsoles developed by Amazon.[10][11][12] The devices are small network appliances that deliver digital audio and video content streamed via the Internet to a connected high-definition television. They also allow users to access local content and to play video games with the included remote control or another game controller, or by using a mobile app remote control on another device.

The device comes in two form factors: Fire TV Cube, a set-top box with embedded Amazon Echo smart speaker (which effectively replaced the original, discontinued Fire TV box models[13][14]) and the Fire TV Stick, an HDMI plug-in stick with lesser specifications than the contemporaneous generation boxes.[10]

The first-generation Fire TV device featured 2 GB of RAM, MIMO dual-band Wi-Fi, and a Bluetooth remote control with a microphone for voice search. It supported 1080p streaming and Dolby Digital Plus 7.1 surround sound but was dependent on internet bandwidth of the user. Unveiled on April 2, 2014, the Amazon Fire TV (1st Generation) was made available for purchase in the US the same day for US$99 and was launched with a video game called Sev Zero.[5] The second-generation version was released in 2015, adding 4K resolution support.[15]

In September 2018, Amazon announced the Fire TV Recast, a digital video recorder which works with an HD antenna to record shows for later viewing on a Fire TV or an Amazon Echo Show device.[16] It is designed for use with over-the-air TV services and is a part of the cord-cutting movement.[17]

Fire TV hardware[edit]

Original model[edit]

First generation[edit]

The first Fire TV (codenamed "Bueller" after the eponymous character from Ferris Bueller's Day Off)[18][19] offers HDMI audio, with support for Dolby Digital Plus and 7.1 surround sound pass-through, along with an Ethernet port and a USB 2.0 port. According to Amazon, the Fire TV is designed to outpace competitors like the Apple TV and Roku in performance: The 0.72-inch-thick box features a 1.7 GHz quad-core CPU (Qualcomm Snapdragon 8064), 2 GB of RAM and 8 GB of internal storage, along with a dual-band wireless radio for 1080p streaming over 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi and a 10/100 ethernet connection. The company said that it does not intend the Fire TV to compete with gaming consoles; instead, its gaming capabilities are geared toward people who do not already own a console but may play games on a smartphone or tablet. It has a dedicated controller accessory.[6]

Second generation[edit]

Amazon released a second-generation Fire TV, codenamed "Sloane",[18] in late 2015. The 2nd generation now features 4K resolution support, improved processor performance, and a MediaTek 8173C chipset to support H.265 (HEVC), VP8, and VP9 codecs. Wireless hardware upgrades includes a dual-band 802.11a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi with 2x2 MIMO and Bluetooth 4.1.[20][21]

Third generation[edit]

The third-generation Fire TV, also known as the Fire TV with 4K Ultra HD and Alexa Voice Remote, was released in 2017; it eschews the previous set-top box design for a small, diamond-shaped "pendant" reminiscent of the Fire TV Stick, which is hung from a short HDMI cable. It contains a slower processor, but more RAM than the second-generation Fire TV, and also has support for 4K resolution streaming, Dolby Atmos, and HDR10.[22][23]

Production was discontinued in 2018 in favor of the current Fire TV Stick.[24]

Fire TV Cube[edit]

First generation[edit]

The Fire TV Cube was released in June 2018. It is similar in function to the third-generation Fire TV, but also includes embedded Alexa functionality similar to the Amazon Echo smart speaker line, and can use HDMI-CEC and an IR blaster to control other devices with voice commands. As its voice functionality is integrated into the device itself, the Fire TV Cube does not include the voice remote.[25][26] The device uses a 1.5 GHz quad-core ARM 4xCA53 processor, 2 GB RAM, and 16 GB storage.[27]

Second generation[edit]

A second-generation model was unveiled in September 2019, featuring a hexa-core processor, "Local Voice Control" (which allows client-side recognition of common voice commands to improve response time), and support for Dolby Vision and HDR10+.[28][29]

Fire TV Stick[edit]

First generation Fire-TV Stick with remote (without voice search)
First generation Fire-TV Stick with remote (without voice search, codenamed "Inigo"[18])

First generation[edit]

On November 19, 2014, Amazon released a smaller version of the Fire TV called the Fire TV Stick. Codenamed "Montoya",[18] it has a dongle form factor that plugs into an HDMI port, and maintains much of the functionality of the larger Fire TV.[30] Its hardware is slightly different, it has 1 GB of RAM, 8 GB of internal storage, weighs 0.9 oz. (25.1 g) and it uses a Broadcom BCM28155 1.0 GHz Cortex-A9 processor and a Broadcom VideoCore IV GPU. Wireless hardware includes a dual-band 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi with 2x2 MIMO and Bluetooth 3.0 [21][31] The Fire TV Stick is bundled with a remote control, in either of two variants; one with voice search on the remote and one without Alexa.

Second generation[edit]

Second generation Fire-TV Stick with Alexa remote (with voice search)
Second generation Fire-TV Stick with Alexa remote (with voice search)

On October 20, 2016, Amazon released the Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote, codenamed "Tank".[18][32] Other than the new remote, the updates include MediaTek MT8127D Quad-core ARM 1.3 GHz processor with a Mali-450 MP4 GPU, and support for the H.265 (HEVC) codec. Wireless hardware upgrades includes a dual-band 802.11a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi with 2x2 MIMO and Bluetooth 4.1.[21] It retains the 1GB of RAM and 8GB of storage and weighs slightly more at 1.1 oz. (32.0 g).[33][non-primary source needed]

In January 2019, the second-generation Fire TV Stick was re-issued with the updated remote from the 4K model.[22]

Fire TV Stick 4K[edit]

In October 2018, Amazon unveiled the Fire TV Stick 4K, codenamed "Mantis", which succeeded the third-generation Fire TV.[34] It is upgraded to a 1.7 GHz quad-core processor and supports 4K output, HDR10+ and Dolby Vision, Dolby Atmos, and hardware-accelerated MPEG-2 decoding. It also includes an updated voice remote that contains an infrared emitter and buttons for controlling TV power and volume (which can also be controlled with voice commands). The remote is backward compatible with previous Fire TV models, and also sold separately as an upgrade.[35][36]

Software[edit]

The Fire TV series runs Fire OS,[37] which is derived from Android Open Source Project source code.[38] It supports voice commands via either a remote control with an embedded microphone, or integrated microphones inside the device (as is the case of the Fire TV Cube), and can also be controlled with Alexa via Amazon Echo smart speakers. The devices support various Amazon-owned services, including Prime Video, IMDb Freedive, as well as other major third-party services such as Hulu, Netflix, YouTube, Apple TV, HBO, Spotify, and others via Amazon Appstore.[23][37][39][40]

The "X-Ray" feature allows users to view contextual information related to Prime Video content (such as biographies of actors and other trivia), using face recognition, music recognition, and IMDb data.[41]

Models[edit]

Model Fire TV Box Fire TV Stick Fire TV Box Fire TV Stick Fire TV Box Fire TV Cube Fire TV Stick 4K Fire TV Cube
Fire TV Generation 1st 1st 2nd 2nd 3rd 1st 3rd 2nd
Release date April 12, 2014 November 19, 2014 September 29, 2015 October 20, 2016 October 25, 2017 June 21, 2018 October 31, 2018 October 10, 2019
MPN B00CX5P8FC B00KAKPZYG B00U3FPN4U B01ETRGSPA B01N32NCPM B01NBTFNVA B079QHMFWC B07KGVB6D6
Status Discontinued Current Discontinued Current
OS [42] Fire OS 5 Fire OS 6 Fire OS 7
Android Version [42] 5.1 7.1 9
System Version [42] 5.2.7.2 6.2.6.8 7.2.0.6
CPU Maker Qualcomm Broadcom MediaTek Amlogic MediaTek Amlogic
Family Snapdragon 600 Quad-core ARM big.LITTLE ARM Cortex-A53 ARM Cortex-A73
Model APQ8064T BCM28155 MT8173C MT8127D S905Z MTK8695[43] S922
Cores 4x Krait 300 @ 1.7 GHz 2x ARM Cortex-A9 @ 1.0 GHz 2x ARM Cortex-A72 @ 2 GHz and

2x ARM Cortex-A53 @1.573 GHz

4x ARM Cortex-A7 @ 1.3 GHz 4x ARM Cortex-A53 @ 1.5 GHz

4x ARM Cortex-A53 @1.7GHz[44]

4x ARM Cortex-A73 @ 2.2 GHz and

2x ARM Cortex-A53 @1.9 GHz

Width 32-bit 64-bit 32-bit 64-bit 32-bit 64-bit 32-bit
GPU Designer Qualcomm Broadcom Imagination Technologies ARM Imagination Technologies ARM
Family Adreno VideoCore IV PowerVR Mali PowerVR Mali
Model 320 Capri VC4 GX6250 450 MP4 450 MP3 IMG GE8300 G52 MP2
OpenGL ES 3.0 2.0 3.1 2.0 3.2
Vulkan n/a n/a 1.0 n/a 1.1 1.0
OpenCL 1.1 embedded profile n/a 1.2 n/a 1.2 2.0
Hardware Decode Support [21] MPEG-4, H.263, H.264 MPEG-4, H.263, H.264, H.265, VP8, VP9 MPEG-4, H.263, H.264, H.265 MPEG-4, H.264, H.265, VP9 MPEG-4, MPEG-2, H.263 H.264, H.265, VP8, VP9
RAM 2 GB LPDDR2 1 GB LPDDR2

(512 MB system, 512 MB video)

2 GB LPDDR3 1 GB LPDDR3 2 GB 1.5GB DDR4 2 GB DDR4
Storage Internal 8 GB NAND Flash 16 GB 8 GB 16 GB
External USB up to 128 GB No Up to 128 GB microSDXC No Micro USB No Micro USB
Microphone No Mic button on remote
Networking Ethernet RJ45, 10/100 Mbit/s USB-to-RJ45 adapter (separate)[45] RJ45, 10/100 Mbit/s USB-to-RJ45 adapter (separate) USB-to-RJ45 adapter (included) USB-to-RJ45 adapter (separate) USB-to-RJ45 adapter (included)
Bluetooth Bluetooth 4.0

HID, SPP Profiles

Bluetooth 3.0

HID, SPP Profiles

Bluetooth 4.1

HID, HFP, SPP profiles

Bluetooth 4.1

A2DP, AVRCP, GAVDP, HID, IOPT profiles

Bluetooth 4.2 + LE

A2DP 1.2-SRC, AVRCP 1.0-TG, HID 1.0-Host, HOGP 1.0-Host

Bluetooth 4.2 Bluetooth 5.0 + LE
Wi-Fi Dual-band 802.11 a/b/g/n

2x2 MIMO

Dual-band 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac

2x2 MIMO dual-antenna

Dimensions 115 mm x 115 mm x 17.5 mm 84.9 mm x 25.0 mm x 11.5 mm 115 mm x 115 mm x 17.8 mm

4.5" x 4.5" x 0.7"

85.9 mm x 30.0 mm x 12.6 mm

3.4" x 1.2" x 0.5"

65.0 mm x 65.0 mm x 15.0 mm

2.6” x 2.6” x 0.6”

86.1 mm x 86.1 mm x 76.9 mm

3.4” x 3.4” x 3.0”

38 mm x 142 mm x 16 mm 86.1 mm x 86.1 mm x 76.9 mm

3.4” x 3.4” x 3.0”

Power Supply 6.25V, 2.5A, 16W, DC 5V, 1A, 5W, DC 15V, 1.4A, 21W, DC 5V, 1A, 5W, DC 5.2V, 1.8A, 9W, DC 5.25V, 1A, 5W, DC[46] 12V, 1.25A, 15W, DC
Power Plug 5.5mm (outer) x 2.5mm (inner) (Coaxial power connector) USB micro-B Cable and USB A-Type Power source 3mm (outer) x 1mm (inner) USB micro-B Cable and USB A-Type Power source USB micro-B Cable and USB A-Type Power source 4mm (outer) x 1.7mm (inner)

Reception[edit]

Dan Seifert from The Verge reviewed Fire TV on April 4, 2014, giving it an 8.8/10 rating and largely praising its functionality and future potential.[47] Dave Smith from ReadWrite wrote, "Fire TV aims to be the cure for what ails TV set-top boxes."[48] GeekWire editor Andy Liu's review is headlined "Amazon's Fire TV sets a new bar for streaming boxes."[49] Ars Technica praised the device for specifications that surpassed competitors, good build quality, and a microphone works very well if you use Amazon content. The reviewer disliked the fact that its media browser puts Amazon content in the front, which makes other applications less convenient to use, limited game selection with many games not optimized, and only 5.16GB of free space, which limits the number of games that can be installed.[50]

Main competitors[edit]

Some notable competitors include Roku, Apple TV and Chromecast.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Saba, Elias. "Amazon Fire TV now available for pre-order in the UK and Germany".
  2. ^ "Amazon Fire TV Launches in India". The Hollywood Reporter.
  3. ^ "Amazon launches new Fire TV devices for Canadian market | IT World Canada News".
  4. ^ a b c "Amazon Fire TV launches in France, Italy, and Spain". Broadband TV News.
  5. ^ a b Horn, Leslie (April 2, 2014). "Fire TV: Everything You Need to Know About Amazon's $100 Streaming Box". Gizmodo. Gawker Media. Retrieved April 2, 2014.
  6. ^ a b "Publish to Fire OS 5". Amazon.com. Retrieved July 24, 2016.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "Amazon Fire TV –Streaming Media Player –Shop Now". Amazon.com. Retrieved April 12, 2003.
  8. ^ James, Dave. "Amazon Fire TV review". techradar. Retrieved 25 Jul 2016.
  9. ^ https://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/customerdocumentation/Amazon_Fire_TV_User_Guide.pdf
  10. ^ a b Johnson, Dave (May 1, 2019). "'What is Amazon Fire TV?': Everything you need to know about Amazon's media streaming devices". Business Insider. Retrieved February 18, 2020.
  11. ^ Solomon, Kate. "Amazon Fire TV is Amazon's powerful new streaming box". Techradar.com. Retrieved April 2, 2014.
  12. ^ Tam, Donna. "Amazon unveils Amazon Fire TV for streaming video". CNET. Retrieved April 2, 2014.
  13. ^ Hall, Parker (September 27, 2017). "Amazon may officially announce two new Fire TV devices at surprise event". Digital Trends. Retrieved February 18, 2020.
  14. ^ Newman, Jared (October 25, 2019). "Amazon Fire TV Cube (second-generation) review: This is the best streaming box with voice control". TechHive.
  15. ^ James, Dave. "Amazon Fire TV review". Techradar. Retrieved 17 May 2016.
  16. ^ Goode, Lauren; Calore, Michael (20 September 2018). "Is there an Echo in here? Everything Amazon announced". Wired. Retrieved 21 September 2018.
  17. ^ "Amazon Fire TV Recast: The new cord cutting DVR explained". Trusted Reviews. 2018-09-24. Retrieved 2018-09-24.
  18. ^ a b c d e "The Amazon Fire TV Stick 2's codename is Tank". AFTVNews.
  19. ^ "Amazon's Fire TV Piles Into the Living Room". Businessweek. 2014-04-02. Retrieved 2014-04-17.
  20. ^ James, Dave. "Amazon Fire TV review". techradar. Retrieved 17 May 2016.
  21. ^ a b c d "Device Specifications for Fire TV". developer.amazon.com. Retrieved 2018-05-08.
  22. ^ a b "Amazon's Fire TV Stick gets a much better remote". TechHive. 2019-01-15. Retrieved 2019-04-20.
  23. ^ a b Patel, Nilay (2017-10-24). "Amazon Fire TV (2017) review: everything but the content". The Verge. Retrieved 2019-04-20.
  24. ^ Roettgers, Janko (2018-10-03). "Amazon Introduces New Fire TV Stick 4K, Alexa Voice Remote". Variety. Retrieved 2019-04-21.
  25. ^ Seifert, Dan (2018-06-21). "Amazon Fire TV Cube review: a smarter streaming box". The Verge. Retrieved 2019-04-20.
  26. ^ Haselton, Todd (21 June 2018). "The Amazon Fire TV Cube is so good I want one for every TV in my house". CNBC. Retrieved 23 June 2018.
  27. ^ "Amazon Fire TV Cube specs, UK release date, price and more". Pocket-lint. 2018-06-22. Retrieved 2018-07-16.
  28. ^ Bohn, Dieter (2019-09-04). "Amazon announces new Fire TV Cube with Dolby Vision, HDR10+, and 'Local Voice Control'". The Verge. Retrieved 2019-09-07.
  29. ^ Stolyar, Brenda. "Hands On With Amazon's All-New Fire TV Devices". PCMAG. Retrieved 2019-09-07.
  30. ^ "How Amazon's Fire TV Stick Compares to Other Streaming Dongles - WIRED". WIRED.
  31. ^ Fire TV Stick - Official Site. Retrieved 8 July 2015.
  32. ^ Estrada, Maren (2016-10-17). "Amazon's next-gen Fire TV Stick with Alexa is only $40, and it launches this week". BGR. Retrieved 2016-10-20.
  33. ^ All-New Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote | Streaming Media Player.
  34. ^ "The Fire TV Stick 4K fixes Amazon's remote problem". techhive.com. 2018-10-03. Retrieved 2018-10-06.
  35. ^ "Amazon's latest Fire TV Stick offers 4K for $50". Engadget. Retrieved 2018-10-19.
  36. ^ "Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K review: This is the media streamer to beat". TechHive. October 31, 2018. Retrieved April 20, 2019.
  37. ^ a b "Amazon Fire TV Cube review (2019): Alexa's streaming box grows up". Engadget. Retrieved 2020-05-06.
  38. ^ Amadeo, Ron (2018-07-21). "Google's iron grip on Android: Controlling open source by any means necessary". Ars Technica. Retrieved 2020-05-06.
  39. ^ "Apple TV app comes to Amazon's Fire TV Stick and other devices". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2020-05-06.
  40. ^ Katzmaier, David. "Amazon Fire TV Stick review: New remote freshens this cheap streamer for 2019". CNET. Retrieved 2020-05-06.
  41. ^ Findling, Deborah (2015-04-13). "Amazon launches X-Ray for Fire TV". CNBC. Retrieved 2020-05-06.
  42. ^ a b c "Amazon Fire TV Device Software Updates". Amazon. Retrieved 2018-05-10.
  43. ^ "COMPARATIVE: Mediatek MT8695 Vs all current SoC". AndroidPCtv. 2018-12-12. Retrieved 2019-01-26.
  44. ^ "COMPARATIVE: Mediatek MT8695 Vs all current SoC". AndroidPCtv. 2018-12-12. Retrieved 2019-03-19.
  45. ^ "Amazon Ethernet Adaptor for Fire TV". Amazon. Retrieved 2020-01-05.
  46. ^ Saba, Elias. "Fire-TV-Stick-4K-Power-Adapter".
  47. ^ Seifert, Dan (2014-04-04). "Amazon Fire TV review". The Verge. Retrieved 2014-04-21.
  48. ^ "Review: The Amazon Fire TV Is Kind Of A Mess – ReadWrite".
  49. ^ Liu, Andy. "Review: Amazon's Fire TV sets a new bar for streaming boxes". GeekWire. Retrieved 2014-04-21.
  50. ^ Johnston, Casey (9 April 2014). "Amazon Fire TV misses the same marks as Ouya, other media boxes". Ars Technica.

External links[edit]

Official website