Amazon has switched to incremental software updates for Fire OS 5 on 2nd-Gen Fire TV


Amazon has switched to using incremental software updates for the 2nd generation Fire TV. This means that over-the-air updates to Fire OS 5 will be tiny in comparison to Fire OS 3 updates on the 1st generation Fire TV. Instead of having to download the entire operating system anytime there’s a software update, you’ll only download the parts that have changed. The latest 2nd-gen Fire TV software update, which fixed the Dolby Digital Plus issue on the new device, clocked in at just under 15 MB. In comparison, the latest 1st-gen Fire TV software update, which is not incremental and therefore includes the entire operating system, was 467 MB. This is great news for those with data caps on their internet service, which is unfortunately becoming more and more common.

If you happen to skip a few software updates, don’t worry, you won’t be forced to install several incirmental updates to catch up. Amazon will combine multiple incremental updates together to get your Fire TV updated quickly, regardless of which version your Fire TV happens to be running. If you boot up a brand new 2nd-gen Fire TV today, you’ll receive a single 128 MB update that takes your devices to the latest software version, even though two updates have been released for the new Fire TV.

It’s unclear at this point if the 1st-gen Fire TV will also be switching to incremental updates once it receives the update to Fire OS 5, but it’s likely. A change to incremental updates does make life a bit more difficult for custom ROM creators, like rbox, since they’ll need to manually combine multiple incremental updates into a single full ROM in order for it to work regardless of which software version the target device is running. If the 2nd-gen Fire TV ever becomes rooted, it will also be necessary to create a clean OS dump of the device for ROM creators to use as their base, since we’ll likely never get a non-incremental software image from Amazon for the 2nd-gen Fire TV. While the workload has increased, fear not, since custom ROMs are still possible with incremental updates from Amazon.

  1. Dan says:

    The beta test continues.

  2. Scott Howell says:

    I was blocking updates via OpenDNS prior to this last incremental update so I was there to watch it download. I was confused how quickly after I unblocked updates, that it was there, ready to be installed! This explains it! It was only 15 MB.

  3. Grinder says:

    If you’re worried about data caps you probably shouldn’t be streaming video.

  4. daffung says:

    this 2nd gen fire tv is total fail, the first setup had lagging, remote would just stop responding, i had to voice commmand total commander and wouldn’t recognize the command… not to mention the remote battery door to put in the batteries took me about 5-10 minutes to open it! the i mean the 1st gen design was perfect as it is why change it…. the second unit i bought the remote was DOA.. it wouldn’t pair with the fire tv! i tested my old 1st gen remote and it worked.. so i had to call amazon for replacement, and glad they sent me the old version 1st gen remote, which i actually prefer as they have no problems..
    i would probably wait until they iron out these things then i would upgrade…

    • Grinder says:

      I can’t believe the number of gumbies who couldn’t figure out how to open the battery compartment. Slide and lift. Guess they succeeded in making it child-proof.

      WiFi remote problems seem to be at the OS end. You just need to remove and replace the network cable to get it going.

      • clocks says:

        I agree. I was concerned prior to unboxing mine, as I read so many complaints. But then when I opened mine, I saw there was a diagram on the packaging how to open it. I got mine open in 3 seconds.

      • daffung says:

        well at first i had to struggle, it wasn’t a normal compartment, after probably 30-40 seconds i figured it out, what i had to do is push up then twist…

    • nealham says:

      Sorry, the first remote was junk. I went through 3 of them. The first 2, the voice control crapped out. The 3rd just stopped working altogether. The 1st box was definitely better though. This 2nd box is just a mess. Definitely the new OS has to be to blame for most of it. It’s just not ready for prime time. The new problem I’m having is that it just shuts off completely and is totally unresponsive. It’s done this 3 times now, not while in use, it happens sometime when it’s not being used. I have to pull the power out and plug it back in to get it back. Also, I noticed something interesting. I use the Remote for Fire TV app, and I noticed when I open it and go to select a fire tv device, under the name of my device it says “DummyModel”. Anyone else find this?

  5. Justin says:

    Hopefully with the incremental updates they will release updates for the new fire quickly and address the many complaints they have been getting.

    The new fire tv launch has not been well received and with lots of competition out and coming out they needs to fix public perception very quickly.

  6. Pat says:

    Glad I had enough sense to keep the aftv1 while futzing around with the 2nd gen I got. Have installed kodi 3x so far. Things keep crapping out non stop.

  7. Ant says:

    My 2nd Generation Fire runs just fine, very fast for Kodi

  8. Ant says:

    and I’ve never bothered using a network cable on this or my 1st gen box, perfect on my 5Ghz wireless, my 1st gen box never dropped connection from Last November until Tuesday when I sold the box and used the money to get the 2nd gen

  9. Ulises Rodriguez says:

    There is a newest version 5.0.3_user_532011220 for the Amazon Fire TV (2nd Generation)!!

    Some users at the XDA_Developers Forum are saying that Amazon Just released Fire TV 5.0.3 for the FireTV Today:

    I think that the information is true, because I just checked the FireTV update site at Amazon, and now says that there is a newest version 5.0.3_user_532011220 for the Amazon Fire TV (2nd Generation):

    I already have sent an Email to Elias, so he could rapidly update the AFTVNEWS site with this great news!…

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