Amazon’s Fire TV Recast over-the-air DVR isn’t dead

In August, Amazon officially stopped selling the Fire TV Recast over-the-air DVR, although it does still occasionally show up as available for purchase in limited quantities, such as right now where I’m seeing Amazon list one in stock. Soon after, Amazon confirmed that the Recast was being discontinued. Since then, I’ve seen numerous comments calling the device dead and suggesting that owners should throw it away and find a replacement. That’s certainly not the case. Here’s all you need to know about the current state of the Fire TV Recast.

The Fire TV Recast was released in 2018 and had a decent 4 year run in Amazon’s Fire TV lineup. It’s the second longest-selling Fire TV anything, being beat by only the Fire TV Stick 4K which has also been sold for 4 years but takes the crown as it’s still fully available for purchase. Amazon discontinues Fire TV devices all the time when a new model replaces an older one, but nobody ever calls those old models dead or abandoned, like is being done for the Fire TV Recast. Heck, Amazon technically “killed” the Fire TV itself since there are only sticks and cubes available these days, with the last model to be called a “Fire TV” being the 3rd-gen Fire TV pendant, which was discontinued in 2018.

The Fire TV Recast being discontinued is likely getting a bigger backlash from existing customers because, unlike all other discontinued Fire TV products in the past, a new replacement model for the Recast was never released. It’s as if Amazon has discontinued the entire device category, not just the device itself, which, rightfully, makes people question the Recast’s continued support. That said, I think it’s premature to call the Fire TV Recast dead, as a whole, and in need of being replaced.

Last year, Amazon, for the first time, officially committed to at least 4 years of software updates for all Fire TV products. Importantly, that cutoff window starts from the last time a particular model was sold in the main Fire TV lineup, not when the product was released. That means the Fire TV Recast’s countdown starts this year, so its software updates are currently guaranteed through 2026, as Amazon states here. I expect that, when the software update support page is updated next year to state updates “through 2027,” the Fire TV Recast will be removed from the list, which will lock in its 2026 deadline for updates.

That certainly doesn’t mean the Fire TV Recast will be getting new features through 2026, but I expect it means it will continue to function as it does today until at least that time, which is why it’s by no means dead. The 1st-gen Fire TV and 1st-gen Fire TV Stick, both released in 2014, were the first Fire TV models to officially stop receiving any software updates, which occurred in 2021, and both models are still fully functional today. I’m not saying the same will happen to the Fire TV Recast after it stops receiving software updates in 2026, but the end of updates certainly isn’t a death sentence, so simply being discontinued is by no means one either.

Am I saying run out and buy a Fire TV Recast on clearance from Best Buy or when it periodically pops up on Woot? No. If you’re in the market for an OTA DVR, the Fire TV Recast having a hard deadline for updates is more than enough reason to consider something else. But, if you currently own a Fire TV Recast, it’s certainly not dead and you’ve probably got at least 4 more years of use before Amazon does anything drastic to stop it from working the way it does today.

46 comments
  1. Jeff W says:

    Well that’s a relief. Now if only they’d fix the guide data issue they’re having that caused recast devices to fail to record numerous new shows this week.

    • Michael says:

      So it isn’t just mine? I have been trying to figure out why it was not recording new shows this week that it had always recorded with no issues in the past. Do you have any more info on this problem?

      • HG says:

        There are a bunch of threads about this in the Amazon Recast forum. Someone from Amazon has replied that they know about the problem and are working on it, whatever that’s worth.

        In the meantime the only solution seems to be to cancel the series and schedule each episode individually. It looks like doing it this way means that the recordings aren’t grouped together but it’s better than nothing.

        I must say it was not good timing for this major issue to happen right after they stopped selling the Recast. I thought I’d have to figure out my next DVR solution much sooner than I’d hoped. Hopefully they really are working on it and it will get fixed soon.

      • T.C. says:

        I have the same problem with it not recording.

        • tr barnes says:

          Good news….I hope. Just got off the phone with the technical service rep. Seems like they’ve resolved the issue. I tested it out and the “RECORD SERIES” now puts the red dots next to future episodes (which it didn’t before). we’ll see if it actually records. the overall customer service ticket is #v736985806 if you want to get your own status. btw…the technical rep’s name was CAMERON and he went out of his way to call me 3 times over the course of the past month to keep me updated on status. GO CAMERON!!!!!! that’s unheard of, especially for amazon customer service reps.

          because amazon isn’t selling the recast anymore, i’m probably going to go with the TABLO next time this one craps out again. they’re still planning on providing support for the recast….at least for a while.

    • Heather says:

      Hi. I found if you delete or cancel the series, you can go back in and hit record BUT for this episode only. Checking whole series will not work. You can record one show for 2 weeks out. I know it’s a pain but at least you won’t miss a show.
      Write down your shows first. Good luck

    • Heather says:

      Hi. I found if you delete or cancel the series, you can go back in and hit record BUT for this episode only. Checking whole series will not work. You can record one show at a time for 2 weeks out. I know it’s a pain but at least you won’t miss a show.
      Write down your shows first. Good luck

  2. Joe Farkas says:

    I hear you, however, the alternative or competing (mostly software based) devices such as Plex, Channels, Tablo(is is a real contender?) etc., have their own much bigger faults than Fire Recast. Therefore, I suggest that Amazon release a Fire Recast V2.0 which would have automatic commercial skips and the correction of al the other ills which plague the other devices. It sure will be a winner with the current trend of Cord-Cutting.

    • Michael says:

      I tried 3 Silicondust HDHOMERUN Flex devices and none of them pick up all of my channels and the weird thing is they pick up different channels every time I scan. I was working with tech support and they bailed on me. I still have two extra devices that I did not pay for because they accidentally shipped an extra.

  3. Playmea says:

    I already own a Recast. And I have been very pleased with the product. But I will be in the market for a replacement soon. I live in Atlanta and we have already adopted the new ATSC 3.0 standards for the 4 major networks. For the sake of future-proofing, I cannot make any purchase decisions that don’t take into account that new standard. Which means that without a Recast alternative from Amazon, I cannot commit to anymore FireTV devices and they are effectively pushing me out of their ecosystem. I refuse to pay for cable or any other live TV service, anymore and have adjusted my entire household setup around OTA and more specifically broadcasting it to all the TVs using a Recast and FireTV devices. That has committed me to the FireTV ecosystem. If they could provide some assurances that they are working on a new product, and soon, that would serve as an alternative and would adopt ATSC 3.0, I could then remain a FireTV customer. If they don’t, they will have lost me. And likely many others that made the same adjustment I did.

    • Joecool5 says:

      Why do you need to stop using your FireTV devices? I had fire sticks on all my TVs before I had a Recast. Most of the currently available replacements for Recast have apps that work with FireTV devices.

      ATSC 3.0 is just rolling out and broadcasters are still required to broadcast ATSC 1.0 for about another 4 to 5 years. Right along the same time frame as Amazons updates for Recast.

      Since ATSC 3.0 is still relatively new, most of the commercial products that will be made for it have not even hit the market yet. I plan to wait a few years until more and cheaper options for ATSC 3.0 are available before I ditch my Recast.

      • Playmea says:

        I don’t have to make the change now. But eventually I will. Amazons updates to the Recast won’t accommodate ATSC 3.0. Amazon confirmed a long time ago that it would require new hardware. The updates will most likely be small security patches or little guide updates. Nothing major. You’re never going to get all the enhancements people have wanted. Amazon would have done them by now and certainly aren’t going to do them with a discontinued piece of hardware.
        As far as ATSC 3.0 just now rolling out. I live in Atlanta and its already rolled out here. So while its not an emergency, its something I could be using today.
        Most importantly, is if and when I’m in the market for any tech, TVs, streaming, OTA devices, no purchase decisions for my household should be made without considering ATSC 3.0 for the sake of future proofing.
        Amazon has refused to incorporate other OTA streamers into its native guide. Thus making FireTV devices a hassle with other streamers. Furthermore, if I have to move to another OTA streamer, which seems a forgone conclusion at the latest when they cease updates, then for the sake of a cohesive ecosystem I’ll likely have to move to a more compatible product. Hence the reason I would be moving away from all FireTV devices.
        Right now I am looking at Nvidia Shield and setting up a plex server.

        • Aardvark says:

          I am in metro NYC and there is only one ATSC 3.0 station on the air, on RF channel 6 broadcasting one stream of Korean TV at 3 kW (WNYZ-LD). The license was secured in order to keep broadcasting FM radio audio on 87.75 MHz FM, which is apparently compatible with the ATSC 3.0 signal. There is a story about the station at https://www.tvtechnology.com/news/wnyz-ld-becomes-new-york-citys-first-atsc-30-broadcaster.

          The problem in New York City is the 600 MHz sale and repack screwed us over pretty bad. All of the remaining UHF and VHF-HI frequencies are in use. There is no spare channel to bring a full power ATSC 3.0 signal on the air (WNYZ-LD is low-power as noted above). The full power broadcasters are going to have to get together and decide who will free up their channel and merge their broadcasts with one of the existing channels to get ATSC 3.0 on the air. Being New York, it will take a long time. As such, the Recast will certainly have a lot of ATSC 1.0 programming available around here. A reply noted above, the hard drive will probably fail long before they are finally able to shut down ATSC 1.0 around here. If we still had 600 MHz spectrum, or some part of it, the transition would have gone a lot smoother.

          • Ben says:

            I agree that the repack really restricts the transition to ATSC 3.0. Really bad timing!

            What’s likely to happen is the ATSC 1.0 broadcasts will become more and more compressed and they will cram the channels onto fewer broadcast channels as they transition other channels to 3.0. While they are required to continue to transmit the 1.0 signals for a number of years I’m not sure if there’s any federal requirement as to the quality of the signal.

        • Joecool5 says:

          My area also has the major networks running ASTC 3.0 but until other devices get cheaper or more come to market I don’t plan to switch yet.

  4. O.R. Mitchell says:

    It would be great to find or develop an alternative programming guide content source for the Recast.

    Also, once Amazon removes integrated support for the Recast in the FireTV GUI, hopefully the Android FireTV Recast App will still be available to install and use (perhaps I should do and try that now!).

    One of my Recast boxes has been a lifesaver for an elderly family member’s use of recording their daily “soap opera shows” and I would hate to have to go out and acquire all new hardware and recreate the easy to use setup I now have…

    @Elias Saba, Thanks for keeping us all up to date on this issue and MANY others…

  5. Justin Seine says:

    I didn’t realize they were updating the software. So many problems that existed when I bought mine in 2018 still exist today in 2022. The look and feel has gone through noticeable changes but bug fixes seem to be outside of Amazon’s peripheral vision, radar and attention span.

  6. Mike says:

    Pretty sure Amazon will follow along with a Recast (+ , Max, 2nd Gen etc ) once ATSC 3.0 is rolled out. Since there is no revenue stream after the sale such as the percentage they get from content, very little reason to put any substantial effort into new features.

    • David d says:

      Any of you on Android 13 device being able to watch any live or recorded shows? I haven’t been able to. Keep getting the same error and you can see on Amazon forums that it hasn’t been addressed for awhile. Pixel 6a and Samsung tab s8. Error 50-409

      • Nightbytes says:

        I get that exact same error and can no longer play recorded shows on my android phone. I USE to be able to until about a month ago… maybe longer.

        That was what I liked about it most but guess their not going to fix it.

        Are there any known work-arounds?

        • C Deak says:

          I along with so many others same problem and alot of money for these problems and now my channel 5 is gone and when try to rescan won’t let me click on thru my tv the channel icon skips right over it. Same thing can’t tape series but yet is taping series of Let’s make a deal,,,, so go figure

  7. Russ says:

    If amazon would just white list silcon dust’s software/guide that would be a great atsc 3.0 setup, but it’s been years so I don’t think it will happen.

  8. VJJ says:

    But RIGHT now the Recast is no Recording SERIES have to record each episode one at a time. this started about a week ago. so they have changed something cause I went on Forum and others are having same issue with recording.

    • Kim says:

      This is unacceptable. I will never buy another Amazon made product again and would like my money back. I haven’t had the recast very long and it has never worked without problems. Too bad they didn’t fix the problems, but chose to runaway from it. I guess if it’s not counterfeit cheap goods, they aren’t interested. So done with any purchase over $50 from Amazon and time to turn off Prime. Not worth the hassles and lies.

      • Doc Wadder says:

        It was fixed last week. ‍♂️ Save the dramatics.

        • K Killian says:

          If you have found a fix please share! Ours is most certainly still not working as of early Nov’22. We’ve gone as far as doing a complete factory reset on the device with no luck whatsoever.

          • HG says:

            Same, mine is still definitely not fixed, although for some reason a few series were not affected.

            And in the forums Amazon is still saying they are working on it.

          • Jeff W says:

            Mine just started recording on its own again this week. I assumed that Amazon fixed whatever bad guide data feed it had received. I was lucky to have shared paramount plus from my daughters bf for CBS, free Peacock for NBC from having xfinity as my internet provider, and $0.99 Hulu for ABC and Fox from last Black Friday. The forced commercials on peacock and Hulu were annoying, but at least I didn’t miss any shows.

  9. Aardvark says:

    I was given a four tuner model as a Christmas gift at the end of 2020 to replace a Slingbox I had for many years. Sling has killed that device off so the Recast was a great replacement. Now there is a countdown on how long it lives. Eventually another piece of e-waste to be added to the pile along with the Slingbox and other software orphaned products.

    • Rik Emmett says:

      I think they have to keep the ATSC 1.0 broadcast format until 2030. The hard drive will fail before then, although I think the hard drive can be replaced with a new one.

  10. Rik Emmett says:

    The recast requires continuous guide data updates, but so do the Fire TV smart TVs, so I don’t see them shutting down updates to the recast, as long as it’s the same guide data provider and the same format as the smart TVs. Tivo changed guide data providers several years ago but still provides guide data to all but their first generation Tivos from 23 years ago, but they don’t send software updates or allow new activations of the second, third and fourth generation boxes. This still leaves Tivos from 2013 and newer with full support. I think there is an economy of scale for sending out the guide data updates, so it’s not worth it to alienate customers by shutting down older devices. Also they can market ads to you based on what TV shows you watch.

  11. Kyle says:

    Does anyone know if I’d be able to use the recast as external storage for a fire stick with an otg cable? I recently started using an iptv and I have the ability to record channels. But instead of getting a new thumb drive I was thinking about using the USB cord from recast to otg.

  12. Charles Brunson says:

    Until they fix the guide/not recording issue it’s useless to me.
    Does anyone have an estimate as to when they might have it fixed?

  13. Keith says:

    Sounds like an update on the Recast caused all the recording issues. Or they hired someone new to update the TV show listings for the Recast and screwed it up.

  14. Wayne West says:

    I purchased my recast because I wanted to be able to record a ota broadcast while watching another program on a competing network channel. I have had it for almost two years and have experienced many issues with mine. It looses communication with my fire sticks often and I have to remove power to the recast to reset the unit. I even went to using a wired network which didn’t help. Now scheduled recording of a series doesn’t work. I have never been so disappointed with a Amazon product. If they don’t fix this I will refrain from doing business with them.

    • Kim Fowler says:

      Me too. I didn’t hear it from Amazon about all these problems. I researched to find out why my series recordings are not working. I thought the idea of a DVR was to able to be away from home to record. I’m livid as I spent an afternoon restarting everything, trying to figure out the problem. I wasn’t aware this was a problem wide spread . I haven’t had my Recast very long and at this point, I want my money back and I will never buy another Fire, Alexa, Fire TV, Blink or Amazon product again. What a crappy way to do customers. Maybe Amazon did me and local businesses a favor as Many of us will not order from them and shop locally. Shame on you Amazon. And to think Amazon was bragging at one time against Google that they keep their products around. Hey Amazon fix your product and communicate with the public in a big way so everyone can beware when it comes to your product. I guess my blink products will be next.

  15. C Deak says:

    I along with so many others same problem and alot of money for these problems and now my channel 5 is gone and when try to rescan won’t let me click on thru my tv the channel icon skips right over it. But does record Let’s make a deal series

  16. K Killian says:

    The long and the short of it is that Recast has, since inception and to this day, been incredibly buggy and error prone. I feel that Amazon got in over their heads on this device and simply cannot get it to function at 100%. It is a very frustrating piece of tech. Amazon is doing the right thing to discontinue it.

  17. Michael says:

    Hopefully they will come out with some sort of dvr, I would gladly pay a small monthly fee for it.

    • K Killian says:

      In the rare chance that Amazon is monitoring…so would I!!

    • Rik Emmett says:

      Sling has a dual tuner DVR that integrates the OTA channels with their app guide. I think you have to subscribe to sling to enable the DVR functionality. Silicon Dust has a Network 2 or 4 tuner OTA DVR with their own DVR software, which requires a fee. I think both of these will integrate into the Amazon guide.

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