Amazon tweaks Navigation Menu on New Fire TV Interface for a 3rd time

Amazon is continuing to tweak aspects of the new Fire TV interface. With the release of the new interface on more devices last week we’re getting their 3rd iteration of the main navigation menu on the Fire TV’s home screen. While each change has been relatively minor, they have been improvements in my opinion. The latest change includes moving the “Library” tab out of the navigation bar and into the “Find” tab. This simplifies the navigation menu slightly, but, more importantly, allows for app icons to become larger and more legible.

First unreleased navigation menu (left) and Second version (right)

When Amazon first revealed images of the new Fire TV interface, the “Home” navigation menu item was on the far left. By the time the new interface actually reached customer’s devices last year, the “Library” tab had been moved from the far right to the far left. This reduced the number of clicks it took to reach your installed apps, which was a welcomed improvement.

Old (top) navigation menu and New (bottom) navigation menu

A complaint that was voiced by many commenters when the new Fire TV interface was unveiled was the small size of the app icons on the home screen. While they still pale in comparison to the movie and TV show icons on the home screen, the removal of the “Library” tab has allowed the app icons to grow by about 13%. Since there is now ample empty space to the left of the app icons, their size now seems to be restricted by the height of the navigation menu, which has not changed. The only other change is a new image used for the all apps icon at the end of the navigation menu.

As mentioned, the “Library” section of the Fire TV interface has been moved to within the “Find” tab. The “Library” section is where you’ll find your watchlist, purchased content, and rented content. If you have a Fire TV Recast, the “Library” section is also where you’ll now find your DVR recordings and DVR management options, like scheduled recordings, recording priority, and DVR settings. Amazon says they made these changes to the navigation menu based on customer feedback they’ve received, which indicated that larger app icons and a simpler navigation menu would be appreciated by a majority of customers.

97 comments
  1. ben says:

    stil lwaiting on it. when they say update is slow roll out they mean it lol. also will this fix the issue of sidlelaoded apps and the grey icon. the other way to fix it is complicated

  2. LDBetaGuy says:

    I own several different streaming sticks and boxes. Each has their good and bad points. There’s lots to love about my Fire TV Stick 4K, but the new navigation menu just looks like an unnecessary rearrangement of the old one. It’s still way too cluttered and clumsy to use.

    • hdmkv says:

      It’s less useful for those of us mainly individual app focused, and sideloading. Seems good for those who subscribe to a bunch of premium streaming services.

  3. awc73 says:

    Has anyone compared this new interface to chromecast with Google TV? It looks like Google TV is able to aggregate all of the stuff you want to watch from all services into one watchlist? I don’t want to switch to google, but if this update isn’t improving things as much, it might be time to go.

    • RG Geiger says:

      Really no comparison. For a app centeric design it’s not bad. For me the home screen is a total waste of time but at least the huge banner ad us gone. I use the live tab most and like what I see. But for streaming I’ll stick with goggle tv where I can click on a show I’m watching and get to it saving several clicks. There is house keeping chores to add the shows I’m watching to the watchlist but I rarely click directly on a services icon anymore.

    • Bob says:

      I have 8 different fire devices from TV’s recast and sticks. I recently bought a google chromecast with google tv and there is no comparison, the Google wins hands down! The only thing to compare it to is my nvidia shield and for the price I would recommend it over any fire device. I am thinking about buying a new tv just to run the chromecast on. For $50 buy one and see for yourself.

      • RG Geiger says:

        Same here. Next step is get into best buy for a demo of the cheaper sony model with baked in google tv. Got to see how channels work for local stations.

  4. ben says:

    just got the update for cube 2 but it still doesnt fix the sideloaded app icon issue

    • TechyChris says:

      There is a better work around for this because the new UI allows for PERMANENT favorites to be set (unlike the old “recents” row which rotated constantly)
      It requires generating an App Launcher via this website:
      atvlauncher.trekgonewild.de
      (it is a legitimate website, I’ve used it for a couple years but I did not want to link it here out of respect for Elias). It takes a little trial an error to get things just right but I use it for Peacock and the Xfinity Stream (mobile version – far superior to the Amazon one)
      Of course you are limited to 6 icons showing on the home screen.

      • ben says:

        the last step when i clcik install tells me i need premium i clicked the x to exit but it wont install

      • Janet Samuels says:

        Hey tacky
        I saw your post just wondering if the side loading work for the stick I wanted to get peacock so my son can watch WwE

        • Nat M says:

          Peacock Premium can be sideloaded on Firestick. 4 mos. for $9.99.
          If you just sideload Peacock it will not be the Premium version.
          (A Comcast Xfinity customer with sideloaded app and Peacock on their cable box here)

      • marshall says:

        Sucks if all you want is your Fire Recast recordings and Prime. I guess Amazon isn’t the priority for FireTV anymore. Might as well use Roku. It’s faster.

  5. awc73 says:

    I would prefer one unified watchlist vs the app centric view if possible. I might have to look into this. Appreciate the feedback.

  6. Eric S says:

    I know it’s difficult to make everyone happy but I strongly dislike moving the DVR / Recast under Library. Horrible place and way too difficult to find. I hope they fix this.

    • Robert G says:

      Totally agree nobody would think to look there. Sit anyone new to it and tell them to find a recording. It is not going to happen. This new interfaces SUCKS with recast and it is there own device.

    • marshall says:

      Amen!!!!

    • Kent says:

      It took me 45 minutes to find my Recast recordings. Nothing should be this difficult, especially when it’s an Amazon product. Amazon support will be getting many calls asking “where are my recast recording”. It should be way more obvious that that.

  7. Charles Raymond says:

    Change is always hard for people to accept! The new interface is fine with me! Like anything else once I find out where everything is at and I get more accustomed to it. Then this new setup should be easy. I guess very soon, people will want spoons and forks to have wings or jets on them so that the utensils will be able to fly the food from their plate directly into their mouth!

    • MH says:

      Don’t be a fool!

    • Steve says:

      Not really. I’d just like to have the tiles for my Recently Viewed apps not be 4 times smaller than they were before.

    • TB says:

      Great You and one other person like it and everyone else think it’s more cumbersome to use. But of course you’re decided it’s we’re all slow learners, and your certainty not just a pompous ass.

      TV landing spaces should be intuitive and not require a learning curve anytime anyone new uses the TV. It’s not all that complicated to design, but when it keeps on getting worse it does kinda piss people off to have to search for their own recordings filed into an unlabeled sub-file.

    • Verna says:

      You are either so amazon obsessed you lack perspective or the type that rolls over and takes it to avoid a conflict despite being wronged. If a product is bad, you complain and demand refund. And the same if the product is made near unusable via software later. Smaller icons are used in update for only apps you already own yet 1st 2 rows are giant advertisements. Whose benefit was in mind when changing this? Clearly not the user,it’s for amazon profits.They know people are more likely to click on the giant icon. Ads on a free to cheap device like their fire tablet, ok, but not acceptable on a $200 cube.Its more anti senior than anything I’ve seen. It makes it so those hard of sight are more likely to make accidental purchases. Big icons are needed for most elder users. What makes it more deceptive is amazon lacked posting an update notice after being changed, so users have no clue where their stuff went.

  8. James says:

    Im in canada and using a fire tv recast with a firestick 4k. I know the recast is not supported officially in Canada, but before the UI update it was working great. Sice the new UI update i can no longer find my recordings. The recordings should be under the librat icon. Strange things is that i can still program a recording and watch from a firestick that still have the old UI. I contacted support and they tried to help me but when they ran out of ideal, they told me its becuse im in Canada. Anyone else in canada with the same issue and have you found a fix?

    • Shane says:

      I’m having the same issue and no longer see my recordings.

    • Shane McCarthy says:

      At least I can watch the recording on the recast app on my tablet. Just need to see of I can cast it to my TV.

      • james says:

        Hello Shane are you in Canada as well?

        • Shane says:

          Yes I am. I’m in windsor next to Detroit

          • Mark says:

            Same issue here (also in Windsor). I was excited for the new UI. Now I can’t access my recast recordings under Library. The same channel lineup is still useable under the Live Guide. Hoping for a fix or work around!

    • My first thought is to try removing the Recast from within the Fire TV’s “Live” settings, then reboot everything, then re-add the Recast to the Fire TV.

      • james says:

        Hi Elias, yeah I had try that. Also customer support at amazon had me do a factory reset of the firestick and its doing the exact same thing after the factory reset.

    • Mark says:

      Hey Fellow Canucks .. great news! Someone posted they jacked Alexa to “show me my DVR”. And it worked! We may not have a button to access recordings on the new UI, but use Alexa and it works!

    • Mark says:

      Hey Fellow Canucks .. great news! Someone posted they asked Alexa to “show me my DVR”. And it worked! We may not have a button to access recordings on the new UI, but use Alexa and it works!

    • Vini Santos says:

      I’m also in Canada and I found my recordings by entering “Recordings” in “Find” or by using the voice commands.
      This is so ridiculous it’s not even funny!

    • VTECMAN says:

      Fellow Canadian with recast here. Same problem. I’m frustrated. I have to use my older tv with an old fire stick that has the old ui to watch my recordings.

    • Richard Dibb says:

      Same issue here – FireTV Recast DVR working fine on Firestick that hasn’t been updated…. not showing up under Library on an updated Firestick. Can still see the recordings in the Fire TV App.

  9. Roxie says:

    And yet the useless “Next Up For You” section which literally has nothing I would willingly watch is still the first row on the UI. Right now it has three telenovelas as the first three choices when I have never clicked on or added any to my Watch list.

    Also, nothing says a more enjoyable and functional UI like scrolling SIX times to see the show I was watching 30 minutes ago.

    I do like having the Recently Viewed Apps/Shows separated but there is no point in them being that far down the rows.

    • Karen says:

      Roxie… my sentiments exactly! I would prefer my Watchlist there vs Next Up For You. We don’t have any way to customize the rows. I bought the device to see what I want to see. The computer guesses over what I marked in my Watchlist on the home screen is a mystery to me. Maybe when they “tweak” in the future there will be some user customization capabilities! Here’s hopjng…

      • Vet says:

        YES! I just turned on and saw the update, my up next a whole lot of I love Lucy stuff, I have never watched that. The first 10 shows were one I would never watch. I dont know what algorithm they used but it horrible. It should be my watchlist or recently watched.

    • Mike says:

      Recently Watched is now 6 rows down. WTF It’s useless now if you ask me.

    • Jc says:

      I agree totally! I wish the Recently Watched row had more space and was the top row again…

    • Wesley Shores says:

      I just side loaded and installed (Wolf Launcher) as my main home screen today. I have everything I want on my home screen now and don’t have to worry about seeing anything I don’t want

  10. Keith says:

    A totally unnecessary redesign. Change for changes sake – just highlights Amazon content and hides the stuff we mostly want to use!

    Ugh!!!

    • Karen says:

      Keith, there is truth in what you’ve said. I noticed that as well. Fir example, when I search for something now, it’s giving me choices of items in the channels that I’ve paid for only. It’s both good and bad. Good if I don’t want to be tempted by choices outside of what I’ve already subscribed to, and bad because if you are looking for something specific it is harder to “find”. Sigh…

  11. Max W says:

    In this new interface, how can I access Prime Video Channels?

    • oasis_001 says:

      If you are asking about PRIME VIDEO CHANNELS that you subscribe to, they are there but buried deep in the home page rows. My PRIME VIDEO CHANNELS row is eleven (11) rows down, twelve (12) if you include the SPONSORED row you have to scroll past. Having this so far down along with RECENTLY WATCHED row now six (6) rows down when it was previously the top row on the home page is not very user friendly. It might get Amazon more sponsorship and advertising fees, but it does not promote quick access to RECENTLY WATCHED and WATCH NEXT content.

    • Each channel you subscribe to should show up in the “all apps” section so you can move it to be one of the first 6 apps so that it shows up on the home screen navigation menu.

  12. Ricko Mark says:

    This “update” sucks. It’s way too hard to find recorded shows. “Search”? really? Why is there no option right on the homescreen.

    • Karen says:

      It would have been nice if they gave us a choice as to whether to update or not, or some warning vs the “surprise! Welcome to the new experience.”

  13. oasis_001 says:

    Sure would like to see the option to turn ON or OFF the option to SHOW PROFILES ON WAKE in one of these new UI updates, like we had in the previous version. Seems odd to update the UI to support multiple profiles and not provide the option to have your system default to the last profile before sleep if you desire that behavior.

    • I agree and I told that to Amazon. We’ll see if they ever implement it.

      • oasis_001 says:

        I don’t get why this would be left out of the update. Doesn’t this make a voice prompt from a linked smart speaker or directly to a Fire Cube to open an app or play content useless if the device has to wake and prompt you for a profile selection first?

  14. MH says:

    I’d like to see a watchlist icon next to the Home icon

  15. Nat M says:

    All this makes the Fire TV2 box the best AV decision I’ve made. Wired network, USB dongle for my Harmony remote and 32GB micro card for apps. And no update. I have a Fire $27 Fire 4K for a spare. With this mess of an update UI I’ll sell it and get a Google TV Chromecast.
    I recommended one to a friend and set it up. It’s really a better user interface. Will be looking for one on Black Friday.

  16. OS says:

    I use my recast a lot. Can’t find the “last channel” option. Or a quick way to get to my DVR recordings.

  17. TLC says:

    Got the new update yesterday, we found the recordings under “library” and your “watchlist” under this icon I hope this helps.\”/

  18. Karen says:

    Me too!

  19. Carla says:

    Not only does the new UI SUCK, the color theme is boring and unappealing to the eyes. SMH

    • Karen says:

      I agree. I don’t mind some of the changes but I miss the play button in yellow. It does not stand out in white.

  20. Jersey Jeff says:

    It does seem like the spot between HOME FIND LIVE and where the small tiles start would be the perfect spot to have DVR pop in if the UI discovers a recast on one’s network. Right now, you can get to your recordings faster by voice command, “Alexa, show my recordings”, than you can by fumbling through the menus.

  21. oasis_001 says:

    Did anyone else lose content from their RECENTLY WATCHED row after the 6.2.8.0 update? I had about 15 items in the row and after one (1) of my devices updated it remained intact. After my other three (3) devices updated over the following days, I now have a RECENTLY WATCHED row that retained three (3) items across all devices. If I watch new content from a never before watched series it is added to the row. But, if I go back and watch the next episode from a series that was previously in my list, the RECENTLY WATCHED row will not update with the NEXT episode. I can restart the device, I can SYNC CONTENT, but nothing seems to bring them back. It is as if Amazon has decided that I shouldn’t be reminded that unwatched episodes are available for shows that were previously in my RECENTLY WATCHED queue.

  22. Mike says:

    This latest update sucks! Only 6 spots for your favorites and most used apps and the icons are so small….crappy. Amazon sucks now as far as I’m concerned!! It did not even ask if I wanted to update, just did it. CRAP!

  23. aDawn says:

    They really don’t care about Recast users at all. The whole no more down arrow to see what’s on my most recently viewed channels is annoying AF. Every time I instinctively do it I end up changing to the next channel. I really hate having to scroll through EVERY FRIGGING CHANNEL to get from shows on channel 6 to channel 35. There’s no reason why they couldn’t have put that on the left or right arrow instead of having both of them just bring you to the program guide.

    At least the circle indicator that moves when you FF/REW just magically reappeared this evening.

  24. BH says:

    The Library (or my Watchlist) should be on the home menu and not under a sub menu that takes more time to get to what I have selected to watch.

    • Karen says:

      It would be nice to have the Watch list as the first row like how it was and I don’t like going to Find, Library. But, change is inevitable. I found that putting the blue Prime Video app as the first app right after Live gives me the closest experience to what I had before with the Watch Next row on the second row. Not as before, but better than throwing in my Fire TV devices. Sigh…

  25. Karen says:

    But then, if enough of us say something to Amazon directly that we would like the Watchlist on the home screen … at the top like before, maybe they would listen. The navigation is more organized than before, except for that. IMO.

  26. Michael Korber says:

    Three clicks just to get to my Recast recordings. NOT Happy with the changes.
    Please reconsider putting the DVR back on the Home page!

  27. RICHARD K KOHL says:

    I cannot stand the new layout. Can we roll it back on our devices? I like the DVR heading we could go to and watch recordings and live tv. Now live tv is a whole menu on its own and the related recordings are buried inside the FIND button. Too much fluff in the hundreds of banners. These changes should be optional and maybe let there be a list in the options so each can choose which interface suits your desires. I’m going to complain a lot for a while while I try to find what I do regularly. Hating it!

  28. Steve says:

    My Fire TV Recast will not fast forward, rewind or pause after the update. Same with live tv now. I used to be able to pause live TV and rewind whatever I was watching. Anyone else having this issue with rewind and FF?

    • Steve says:

      Found the answer. They have removed the function of FF and rewind from the circular ring and you can’t press the center button inside the ring to pause anymore. You have to use the actual buttons for these located under the home and menu buttons, above the volume buttons. I honestly had forgotten those were even there because I always use the ring to ff and rewind. Hope this helps someone else.

  29. Rik Emmett says:

    The interface is designed to maximize profitability. Anyone who dislikes the interface isn’t someone that amazon wants as a customer. There is plenty of free content with commercials to watch without even subscribing to any streaming service.

    • Karen says:

      Yes, Rick. The interface is designed to maximize profitability, but they still must consider the user and their viewing experience.

      I watch a lot of free programs, but I also subscribe to channels. While I am browsing and see something whether free or not and I mark it to come back to, I would like to have easier access to those items and hence want to see the Watchlist on the home page and not tucked away under a submenu. And, since I paid for multiple Fire TV devices and move from one to the next in my home, I would like to see what I was last looking at back at the top of the rows on the Home page hence wanting to see Recently Viewed back where it was and how it was functioning. It made it wonderfully easy to continue watching something that you were in the middle of watching … where you left off … from device to device. Moving Recently Viewed anywhere other than where it was made my viewing experience worse, not better.

      I think their navigation should be an improvement and not a make things worse for their customers. And, everyone is entitled to their opinions. I can see where they were going with their changes, but I think they failed the customers with those two items, at least.

      Paying customers will complain with change and their comments should be heard and considered. We have the right to move on to other devices and services too. Just saying…

  30. Michael Oddo says:

    I have the Fire TV Recast and this new update is obscuring the DVR funtions. My wife is complaining that the “fast forward” and “rewind” capabilities are NOW GONE! She is very upset, because she uses the DVR function on the RECAST quite alot, so that if she can’t watch a program at the exact time it starts, she usually was able to rewind and watch it from the beginning, and then fast forward through the commercials and catch up.

    Not happy with this update, can’t even find the DVR funtions on the new menu, only way to get to it seems to be through the “voice” button.

    WTF Amazon?

  31. tlp says:

    I can understand wanting to scale up the bar for smaller TV’s. All they needed to do was to iconize Home, Library, Find and DVR buttons to square tiles and not rectangular labels. Then they would have plenty of room.

  32. Brian says:

    Not a fan yet if the new interface. I had to perform research just to find my Watch List as they hid it so well. Also, more clicks to run YouTube TV as now I have to navigate to the Live section first. Really, instead of just re-arrange everything I wish they would just make the interface more intelligent by putting the things I most use front amd center and also allow me to customize my Home Screen. Instead, I feel like they are intentionally putting things in my way hoping to sell me in them…

  33. Karen says:

    Thank you, Springfield. Here’s hoping!

  34. Wes says:

    I want the library back on the navigation bar myself

  35. Joe bubba says:

    Have to click 3 times instead of 2 for what I was last watching ,! This sucks big time. Let us do a rollback! Please !

  36. Tc says:

    Used to be while watching live channels I could back up n/seconds and review a scene because the dog barked and I missed a few lines of dialogue. Now I can’t find how to backup the viewing.

  37. David says:

    Why is the new interface so slow? Wow! I’m waiting on the dial up internet sound to start. Like the look but superrrrrrrr slowwwwwwwww! Has anyone else noticed the slowness?

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