A new report claims Fire TV update will block all 3rd-party apps like Kodi


A new report from Cord Cutters News claims that “sources close to the new Fire TV OS” say Amazon will block all 3rd-party apps (i.e., sideloaded apps) like Kodi from being installed on the Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. The “new Fire TV OS” being referred to is likely the upcoming interface redesign expected later this year. I’ve reached out to Amazon regarding this article and they’ve told me the rumor is wrong and that there is no change planned for 3rd-party app support on the Fire TV.

I know some of you might not necessarily believe Amazon, so I’ve spoken with Luke from Cord Cutters News to learn a bit more about his sources and what they’ve said regarding the matter. I’m not at liberty to reveal any details, but based on what I’ve been told about the origin of this rumor, I suspect it’s more likely a misunderstanding of the new UI than Amazon actually secretly removing 3rd-party app support.

My best guess is that some change to the way developer options are accessed on the upcoming new Fire TV interface is spurring these rumors of Amazon blocking sideloading. In the latest Fire TV software update, Amazon has added a new “Developer Options” menu to the hidden Developer Tools Menu in Fire OS. I’ve speculated that a future Fire TV software version may move the ADB Debugging options, which are necessary for sideloading 3rd-party apps, into this hidden menu. If this were to happen, it could very easily be interpreted as Amazon blocking 3rd-party apps because, to the uninformed, it would appear that there was no longer a way to enable ADB Debugging.

While the article is over a year old now, you can read my thoughts on Amazon blocking Kodi and why I don’t think it is likely to happen. The same goes for blocking all 3rd-party apps. If there is ever a move to block Kodi, I expect Amazon would first try blocking it with the Fire TV’s app blocking function, which has yet to happen, long before they took the drastic measure of blocking all 3rd-party apps.


  1. Elad says:

    The day this would happen, My Prime subscription would be canceled.

  2. scofield27 says:

    thank you for the info,
    i’m going to refresh this page every 5 seconds for new details:)

  3. FireTV User says:

    There are other options that work just as well to run Kodi on, such as the Raspberry Pi and Windows 10 on the Kangaroo. For myself, the advantage to running Kodi on the Fire TV and Fire TV stick is the remote control. That’s it.

    • Chris says:

      That’s the exact same reason I use it. I don’t want to go back to IR dongles and such with a Pi. (I can never get HDMI HEC working).

  4. xnamkcor says:

    ADB is only needed for sideloading. Installing APKs from local or even network locations from the Fire TV is still possible since ES File Explorer is official and on the store. Unless they remove that.

    Under the scenario that ADB is disabled and ES File Explorer is removed from the Amazon store, the next option would be to put the APK on the USB. But how to run it? I guess I can’t hypothesise unless it actually happens since it will depend on if there is a file explorer in the official store when it happens. Or a terminal program. Since, I’m pretty sure you can install/run an executable from that.

    • William Olsen says:

      They have already removed html and jave support for viewing the file links to download tue apk in es file. Get with the program

      • xnamkcor says:

        When did I meantion HTML or Java? And what are they required for for any of what I said? And what does ES File Explorer not being able to download a file have to do with opening a file?

  5. TheUnchosenOne says:

    I see cordcutters news added this:

    Update: Amazon PR contacted Cord Cutters News today with the following statement on this story. “There is no change planned for 3P app/dev support currently available on Fire TV.”

    So that should be that…

  6. Ujn Hunter says:

    Amazon would face a lawsuit if this were to happen. Not to mention all the returns. I highly doubt they’d risk this.

    • Christopher Loughrey says:

      How would they face a lawsuit? It’s their liberty to remove the ability to install apps that facilitate piracy. Sideloading apps isn’t an advertised feature that’s key to why most customers buy the device anyway.

      • TechyChris says:

        Enough with the piracy talk. The majority of third party apps have NOTHING to do with piracy. News flash, I can launch YouTube on my FTV, type in the words ” new full movie” and I guarantee within seconds I will be watching a “no-no” movie . Should Amazon block YouTube as well? If they do, they will take a serious hit to their bottom line.

      • Joe D says:

        Because when I purchased my Fire TV it had the ability to install 3rd party apps. It gave it value to me. To remove this ability without giving me a choice would basically be stealing from me as you removed value I already paid for.

        When Sony removed the ability of PS3’s to install a Linux operating system they gave users the option of installing that update or not. Of course not installing the update meant no more online game playing. Yet they still got sued in a class action lawsuit and will have to refund people who used 3rd party OS’s on their PS3 $50 each according to the settlement email I have in my inbox right now. This would be a very similar issue- arguably worse as people won’t have a choice.

        • V says:

          Thanks for posting about the PS3 settlement; I hadn’t heard about it. Being an affected OtherOS user, you just netted me $55!

  7. Christopher Loughrey says:

    I can see this happening someday and I’m surprised they have allowed an app like Kodi that facilitates piracy of their own content to remain on the Fire TV. I always block updates on my Fire TV because this always remains a possibility with every update.

  8. boudyka says:

    Kodi doesn’t facilitate piracy. pirates pirate. If its not Kodi any other flavour of product would be sliced diced and used by pirates for piracy….doh.

    Do I really have to list what came before Kodi and what could possibly come after. When it comes to piracy…there is nothing, absolute nothing, Kodi could do to stop it and that goes for its downstream branches also.

  9. tech3475 says:

    I would be surprised if they remove sideloading/debugging entirely, blocking specific apps maybe but devs need it to debug software (unless they start coming out with ‘debug kits’ like traditional consoles).

    I would also be surprised if Amazon aren’t aware of potential consequences, I’m sure the day they block kodi and other third party apps their sales will drop while other vendors will see a sudden rise.

  10. Tony says:

    Maybe in 3 or 4 years I can see drastic changes like this maybe happening to block certain apps and pirate apps. But By then we may all be into other enjoyable hobbies like vr, etc…so it may not be a big deal to some of us by then. :)

  11. Bomnbo says:

    What I would say is that it is not supposed that the box is ours, not paid for it? to mine I can install what I want or not? or it was only what we pay rent? amazon that does not bother much with wanting to force us to use the applications they want.

  12. manny pacq says:

    Here we go again, rumors again… this has NOT been confirmed yet.

  13. C3P0 says:

    The new Mi Box works wonderfully and doesn’t have that FUBAR GUI of Amazon… Check it out!

  14. jimberkas says:

    i ordered the Mi Box and I have a Nexus Player and several Roku 3. I also have two Chromecasts. My boxes of choices are my 3 Fire TVs and 3 Fire Sticks. But if amazon blocks 3rd party apps, I’ll never buy another Fire devices and start buying the new Rokus

  15. Eric DeBrune says:

    Elias, why the flap are you giving this non-story traction?

    At least change the subject heading.

    • AFTVnews says:

      I considered ignoring it, but decided it was better to address it and show why it’s a non-story, if for no other reason than to stop the messages I was receiving about it.

      The title was a mistake. I wrote the title first thing, before hearing back from Amazon. I meant to change it before publishing, like I usually do with my titles, but forgot and published the article. By the time I remembered I didn’t change the title, it would be confusing to people if I changed it after the fact. I greatly regret the title of this article and I’m sorry.

  16. Sven says:

    So is the my last OS on my both Sticks… blocked OTA, run flawless and with root and xposed i have all what i need. And in December i will have to look for a other Box for my Sons birthday. Kodi is a must have

  17. shwru980r says:

    Amazon themselves are allowing customers to run a plex server from their unlimited cloud storage. Ripping DVDs and Blurays to upload to amazon and watch with plex is illegal. A licensed device is required for decryption of DVDs and Blurays.

  18. Ray Herrera says:

    Amazon can do as they wish there are other ways to watch kodi. But all that will do is kill amazon sales after all its all about making money and if it wasn’t for kodi nobody would be buying all those fire stick and boxes.

  19. Billy says:

    One thing to think about. You could still mirror kodi from your android phone or tablet. Hopefully they keep 3rd party support. I love the mouse toggle for fire tv. Definitely try it out. It eliminates having a mouse and keyboard for sideloaded apps. Can get it on play store or amazon fire store.

    Check out “Mouse Toggle for Fire TV”

  20. Iain says:

    Buy an android box then you can get 1 for around the same price as a firestick

  21. Charles says:

    Can’t see Amazon blocking anything dealing with Kodi guest is their biggest seller is and what is driving it

  22. Tony Ramirez says:

    I know people like sideloading apps but to tell the truth I would not miss it. Whenever I sideload apps it causes issues with the FTV so I don’t do it anymore.

  23. Dave Curran says:

    Now this has been confirmed to be NOT happening, this is a bit of a moot point, but if this ever were to happen I would stop using the fire TV and stop my Amazon Prime subscription.

    Although the Fire TV is great for Prime Video, and Prime Music, a big use of mine is for emulation. Because it’s great at emulating all the consoles I enjoyed as a kid, I have a range of apps that – if removed – I’d be forced to use another way, and without the fire stick, I wouldn’t be bothered so much about having Prime.

  24. Y2Bogus says:

    Isn’t it part of the licensing agreement for use of the Android OS that certain features are required to remain enabled?

  25. Rafael Collazo says:

    EZ fix if they block Kodi. Download the Kodi app onto your phone. Download the add-ons. Get a chromecast and mirror cast on your TV. Works great and didn’t have to buy a fire stick for each tv in my home.

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