ES File Explorer, the popular file management app, is no longer compatible with the Amazon Fire TV or Fire TV Stick. It’s unknown if Amazon is responsible for removing the app or if the app’s developers have decided to drop support for Fire TV devices. ES File Explorer was just updated to version 188.8.131.52 and the update notes say it has a “brand new UI” and “a bunch of new features.” It’s possible the developers just haven’t tested these changes on the Fire TV yet, which would explain the dropped support. The previous version of ES File Explorer was barely compatible with Fire TV devices and was very difficult to navigate without a mouse and keyboard.
ES File Explorer is especially popular among Fire TV owners because it is the only official Fire TV app that has a built in web browser. The web browser allows Fire TV owners to sideload apps without needing a PC or external device. An alternative to ES File Explorer is Total Commander, but without a web broswer, Fire TV owners will need to load APKs onto a USB thumb drive or microSD card if they plan to use Total Commander for sideloading. Fire TV Stick owners will have to use one of several other sideloading methods.
I sideloaded the latest version of ES File Explorer onto a Fire TV and the new UI appears to work as well as the previous version, so hopefully we’ll see the app return to the Fire TV appstore once the developer verifies it still works with the Fire TV remote. I’ve reached out to ES File Explorer’s developer for more information on the situation, and will update everyone if I receive a response.
8/2/2016 ES File Explorer has returned to the Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick