When it comes to home entertainment, streaming is the new normal. With its pervasiveness, it’s not really a matter of if you stream, but how you stream. There are many choices when it comes to streaming devices from devices connected to the TV to TVs with streaming capability built-in. One of the more capable streaming devices available is Amazon Fire TV. Not just for the Amazon-centric entertainment seekers, Fire TV brings the entire streaming experience to your home with some differences that make it stand out in the crowd of streaming devices.
Here are some things you should know about this streaming device that may make it the choice for you when it comes to streaming.
Fire TV is a video streaming device created by Amazon that connects to a TV via an HDMI port and provides a user interface from which to stream. There are several different versions of Fire TV, starting with the bargain-priced Fire TV Stick Lite and ending with the top-of-the-line, premium Fire TV Cube. Each version has its own features ranging from picture and sound quality to connectivity, but all of them are suitable to stream movies, music, and games.
Installing Fire TV to your TV is as simple as plugging in an HDMI cable. Fire TV instantly turns your TV into a smart TV. Once connected to your home network, you’ll be streaming in no time. In addition, instead of needing to purchase a separate device, there are a number of TVs that come with Fire TV built-in. With Fire TV built-in, there is no need to separately set up Alexa as with external Fire TV devices. The Fire TV experience whether from an external device or built-in is the same.
Once linked to an Alexa device like Amazon Echo, you can use your voice to play content and navigate via play, pause, fast forward, and rewind. Setup is not necessary with Fire TV Cube and TVs equipped with Fire TV as Alexa is built-in.
Since it’s an Amazon product, Fire TV seamlessly integrates to watch movies and TV shows on Amazon Prime, or to listen to music via Prime Music. But there are countless free and subscription streaming apps that are able to be used with Fire TV including services like Netflix, Crackle, YouTube, HBO Max, Disney+, and many more.
You can use Fire TV for much more beyond watching your favorite shows and movies. It also streams audio using apps like SiriusXM, iHeartRadio, and Pandora, among others. You can also listen to podcasts and radio stations with capable apps.
Games for Fire TV are free or can be purchased. Gaming also comes via the Luna cloud gaming service. To play, you can use either the Fire TV remote or a compatible game controller, like the Luna game controller, to play one of the many games available.
However, it is specifically tailored to the Fire TV OS meaning it can’t run Android apps. With the Amazon app store, most of the same apps found elsewhere are available for Fire TV.
Fire TV has privacy and security controls. Via the Fire TV OS, you can delete your data as well as stop it from tracking you for tailored advertisement purposes. An added layer of security is added when you activate two-factor verification on your Amazon account which is then activated on your Fire TV.
You can use your mobile phone as a Fire TV remote. All that is needed is the Fire TV app on your phone and that your phone is connected to the same wi-fi network as your Fire TV. The Fire TV app has a full complement of features to control Fire TV. Also, Fire TV is Bluetooth compatible. Just sync up a pair of Bluetooth headphones and you’ll be binge-watching Amazon Prime Video late at night with no worries of disturbing your household.
Up to six Fire TV profiles can be set up. With a Fire TV profile, you can personalize your individual experience with watchlists, viewing history, recommendations, and watch progress among other customization settings. Each member of your household can tailor their Fire TV experience to their viewing characteristics.