New Alexa enabled Fire TV Stick available in April
The third generation Amazon Fire TV Stick has been given a UK release date of 6th April 2017 and is now available for pre-order.
The headlining feature of the device, which was released in November 2016 in the US, is an Alexa digital voice assistant blessed remote control allowing for a myriad of control and search options. Alexa integrates with thousands of apps including Netflix and streaming services beyond Amazon’s own offering. Alexa also ‘speaks’ to smart home enabled devices and replicates remote control commands such as ‘skip forwards three minutes,’ stop and pause. The Fire TV Stick is also able to use the ever-growing number of third party Alexa skills, so the possibilities are near endless, even if many of them aren’t all that useful.
The new Fire TV Stick has been beefed up inside so it’s reported as being around 30% faster than the second-gen device, although the extra processing doesn’t extend to 4K – and by extension HDR – video; you’ll need the new Fire TV for Ultra HD and Alexa support.
The user interface has also been revamped and now appears to be quite ‘Netflix-y’. The navigation menu is now at the top, rather than down the side, while a carousel at the top features content suggestions, not only from Amazon this time but other services too. Below that is your recent content and just further down is a customisable row of your favourite apps and games. There wasn’t much wrong with the older UI but the new one definitely looks to be less focused on pushing Amazon content at you, which is a good thing.
The new Fire TV stick is priced at £40, which is an inexpensive way to get a try of Alexa, if nothing else.
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