Amazon’s brand-new, revamped Fire TV is pretty awesome. At $70.00, it is smaller and more powerful than it’s predecessor.
How does it look?
Right off the bat, the new Fire TV looks different. It is a 2.6 by 2.6 inch square that hangs from your tv from an HDMI cable you plug into your HDMI port on your television. When it attaches like this, the industry calls it a Dongle. Chromecasts Ultra had an oversized dongle that looked like a round puck. This new Fire TV dongle is slightly bigger and is square.
The Dongle Advantage
If you have a dongle as a streaming device, it doesn’t take up any room on your counter, and can be the perfect match if you have a wall mounted television. You could also move it easily between rooms in your house, or even take it with you on a trip.
So it streams at 4K– is this good?
The new Fire TV now can stream 4K Ultra HD. IN tech talk that is up to 2160p at 60fps, and adds support for HDR -10 (High Dynamic Range). All of this sounds good, but only if you already have a television that is upgraded to the 4k Ultra HD or HDR TV. If you do, this device is for you.
Should I get it?
If you don’t have Ultra HD television it wouldn’t really help you in that department. So, if you aren’t streaming at Ultra HD, there is really only one remaining advantage to buying the new Fire Stick. That is the Alexa remote. This remote allows you to control your tv using only voice commands. If you already have an Alexa, you can just talk out loud and control the Fire TV just by your voice.
There are other streamers that use voice control, such as Roku, but Roku only controls the television. If you have Alexa, you can use your voice commands to control several other things in your house, play music, and so on. Apple TV4K does the same thing with Siri, but is substantially more expensive, with units starting around $179.00
There are over 500,000 movies available through Fire TV, and 190 channels. If you are a sports fan and are an Amazon Prime member, Thursday Night Football is now streamed for free.