Amazon has announced the next generation of Fire OS which is the operation system that powers their various Fire devices, including the Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. The new version, dubbed Fire OS 5, is based on Android 5 Lollipop, which is the latest version of Android. Starting today, developers may sign up for early access to the new OS. The developer preview is currently only available for the Fire HD 6 and Fire HD 7 tablets. Amazon has also announced a limited time offer which gives developers $50 off up to two Fire HD 7 tablets. With the Fire HD 7 currently on sale for $99, that’s a heck of a deal if the two promotions overlap.
“…Fire OS 5, the next generation Android-based operating system that powers Fire tablets, Amazon Fire TV, Fire TV Stick, and Fire phone devices.” -Amazon
Amazon says the new operating system will be “launched later this year” but has not given specifics as to which devices will receive the new OS. They did, thankfully, include the Fire TV and Fire TV Stick when listing the devices that will run Fire OS 5. The Fire TV and Fire TV Stick both use, and have always used, Fire OS 3, which is based on Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. Other Fire devices have moved on to Fire OS 4, which has caused a bit of concern that the current generation of Fire TV devices would remain on the older platform indefinitely. The Fire TV app library would eventually begin to suffer from using an older platform because app developers would not have access to capabilities found in newer versions of Android. Assuming this news means the current generation of Fire TV devices will eventually be updated to Fire OS 5, you can be confident your Fire TV device will remain compatible with all the best apps in the foreseeable future.