AMAZON FIRE TV STICK, WHAT IS IT AND HOW DOES IT WORK?
What is the Amazon Fire TV Stick?
The Amazon Fire TV Stick is essentially the e-commerce giants’ streaming content device. It is a new device for Amazon to join the competition in bringing streaming technology to your home. You simply need to plug the Fire Stick into your TV’s HDMI port, and this will provide you with access to music, games, photos, your favorite TV shows, movies and subscription services. If you want to lock down and house all your favorite content and take it wherever you like, then the Amazon Fire TV Stick might just be what you are looking for.
WHAT DO YOU GET WITH AMAZON’S FIRE TV STICK?
Picture this, you go on vacation and you get to take your TV and all its content with you. A dream? No, it’s a functional reality with the Amazon Fire TV Stick. All your content is housed within the Fire TV Stick and it’s completely portable. Just take it out of the HDMI port from your TV and take it with you when you travel or when you just want to take it to a friend or relatives house. Plug it back into a compatible TV and boom, you have all your content ready to go.
As with most things Amazon, if you are an Amazon Prime Member you get your Fire TV Stick already pre-registered to your account, meaning that all of your Amazon Prime content is immediately accessible as soon as you plug the Fire TV Stick into the HDMI port. You can also access all of the Prime Originals being an Amazon Prime member, that non-members cannot get as average users.
When your packaged gets delivered from Amazon, everything required to make the Fire TV Stick work is already there. Inside the box is your new Fire TV Stick, USB and power cable, a Bluetooth remote control, 2 x batteries, THE HDMI extender and a guide to help you get things rolling.
Outside of physical additions, you will get these as well
8 GB of internal storage
1 GB of memory
Optional voice support
Dual-band, dual-antenna Wi-Fi A dedicated VideoCore4 GPU
HOW DOES THE FIRE TV STICK WORK?
Just like other rivals to the Amazon Fire TV Stick, like Chromecast and Roku, the Fire TV Stick plugs into the USB port of your HDMI TV, then it connects to WiFi. The Fire TV Stick is then controlled by the remote via Bluetooth. Once plugged into the USB port, you will go through a setup process which includes logging into your Amazon account.
Since the Fire Stick becomes your hub for all content, once you are logged in you will be able to access all your videos and music that you have purchased through your Amazon account, including access to all of your photos and pictures that have been uploaded to ACS (Amazon Cloud Service).
The device will also allow you to get access to tons of apps and games, like Netflix as an example. Using your Fire TV Stick you can open Netflix and start watching the content available through that service. Similarly, open the YouTube app and begin to browse through the videos of your favorite artists or vloggers. Some of the services available, like Hulu, HBO and ESPN can be accessed, just at a cost.
Even with associated costs for the above services, it does give you control over which of the services you actually want to pay for, rather than being held to ransom over a cable package that contains a lot of garbage you just shouldn’t have to pay for.
If you want to pay another cost and get yourself a controller, you can access and play the games that are available. The controller can be purchased at Amazon.com.
FIRE TV & FIRE TV STICK, I’M CONFUSED..
Don’t be, the main difference here is the size. The Fire TV Stick is a lot smaller than the Fire TV. It is about 3 inches long and is what plugs into your TV. The Fire TV is a sleek, square console that would sit near your TV and is about 4 and a half inches on each side. They both offer the exact same services and both include the Bluetooth remote control. If your TV is wall mounted, the Fire TV Stick is what you would be looking for.
There is also a cost difference between the two with the Fire Stick coming in at under $40 and the Fire TV just under $100. Why the cost difference if they do the same thing? Well, there are some differences. The Fire TV will offer up 2gb of RAM which makes the Fire TV more responsive than the Fire Stick. The Fire TV Stick will give you 1gb Ram. The Fire TV will also come with additional ports for expansion, like ethernet port, microSD slot and USB port. These additional ports will make accessing content a little easier than the Fire Stick.
The Fire TV Stick enables you to watch up to 1080p for the basic and 4K on the new 3rd generation model, whilst the Fire TV is able to give you 4K streaming access. If you have, or are leaning towards going 4K, you may want to give some thought to the Fire TV over the Fire TV Stick. However if it’s the portability aspect that is more attractive, then you can’t really go past the Fire TV Stick, especially with the new 4K version available.
Have a good think about your current setup and what would suit you best before making your decision.
WHY WOULD I NEED TO BUY A FIRE TV STICK?
It’s all about simplicity and the Fire TV Stick gives you that. Cable can be confusing and ugly, endless rows of TV shows that seem to come in any order. The Fire TV Stick does away with that and gives you access to what you want to see and not what the cable company wants to package up for you.
You can access your Fire TV Stick through the Amazon Alexa device for even easier searching capabilities. This can be achieved by either downloading the Fire TV remote app to your phone or tablet, speaking your preferred piece of content and allowing the app to send your request to the Fire TV Stick, or you can just press the black button and speak your choice of preferred content.
The other fascinating thing the Fire TV Stick will do over time, is learn about your preferences using Advanced Streaming & Prediction (ASAP), to make predictions for you, based on previous searches or viewing history. It’s a clever little addition to throw some choices at you that you may not have thought to look for.