Amazon has entered the media-streaming box market with the Fire TV box. The content giant hopes that Fire TV will take the place of Roku and other streaming boxes in your living room.
Amazon certainly does its research when new Fire TV users purchase the box, and the whole thing is simple to use. But, does Amazon’s streaming box belong in your living room? Let’s take a closer look.
Fire TV Explained
Amazon’s Fire TV box looks a lot like the Apple TV box (or any other box, really). It’s small, it’s black, and it’s inconspicuous. It also comes loaded with your entire Amazon content. If you purchase anything from Amazon (TV shows, videos, etc), it will all be available the minute that you plug your Fire box in and turn it on. Amazon will also make all content uploaded to Cloud Player available soon. Making sure that user content is pre-loaded is a nice touch.
The Fire TV box also comes with games. That’s right, games. Amazon has loaded this box with really fun games that you’ll want to play. Amazon is allowing all app providers to create their own apps, but the apps included thus far look just like the ones you’d find via Apple TV or Roku.
You can’t watch live content yet, but that might change. As far as the remote that come with the Fire TV box, well, those are a heck of a lot simpler to use than anything that Apple or Roku puts out. You’ll also find Amazon’s new voice search option at the top of the remote. Use this button if you want to search for content using your own voice (a new and nice feature).
Amazon’s main goal with the Fire TV is to get into your living room. That’s why the Fire TV box works best with Amazon content. You can’t use the voice system if you are in another app (won’t work), and you can’t stream anything live using other apps. Amazon has built this box to work with content that comes from Amazon, but that’s not a huge surprise (is it?).
Why would you want a Fire TV box as opposed to other streaming boxes? For one, it comes with games (and that might be a deciding factor). Another reason is that this box is great for people that already use Amazon content, or use Amazon as the go-to content source.
If that sounds like you, you will like the Fire TV box. Is it hugely different from Apple TV or Roku? Not really – aside from the things mentioned. But, it’s Amazon, and Amazon tends to corner the content world, so that’s something to think about.
Where to Buy Fire TV
Amazon, of course! That’s where you’ll find the Fire TV box for $99. The box can stream Netflix, Hulu Plus, Showtime Anytime, Crackle, Vimeo, and Amazon Instant – HBO is missing from this lineup, but Amazon has told press that HBO is coming. Who’s going to buy a Fire TV box?