I am very excited to announce the latest version of my Downloader app for the Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. The big new feature of this 1.1.1 version is a built-in web browser. The browser allows you to easily navigate websites using the Fire TV remote without needing a mouse or keyboard. Downloading files is available through the browser so you no longer need to know the direct download URL to the file you want to download or the APK you want to install. You can just navigate to any website and click a download link to get the file you want.
Lon Seidman has created a great video showing off the new browser feature and how to use it to easily install Kodi. I’ve been a long time subscriber of Lon’s YouTube channel and I cannot recommend it enough. As Lon mentions in his video, by sheer serendipity, the first Fire TV I ever owned was originally his which he reviewed and sold to me afterwards.
Just like before, if you know the direct URL of a file you want to download, you can still enter it on the app’s home screen and download files that way. That is still the fastest way to install APKs, but the Downloader app now detects if a URL you enter leads to a web page and asks if you want to load the page in the built-in web browser. You can also open the browser directly from the menu on the left and enter URLs to open from there as well. For those who need it, I’ve updated my sideloading guide with step-by-step instructions for using either a direct URL or the new browser.
The built-in browser uses an on-screen cursor, that acts like a mouse pointer, to navigate around websites. You move the cursor around the screen with the circle direction buttons on the Fire TV remote and you click by pressing the center select button on the remote. If you move the cursor to the edge of a web page, it will automatically scroll in that direction, but you can also scroll up and down by pressing the fast forward and rewind buttons on the remote. Lastly, you can move back and forward through the history of pages you’ve visited using the back and play buttons on the remote.
Johannes Bramauer, the developer I’ve hired to help me with my Downloader app, did a great job with the new browser. The original intention of the browser was to just make it possible to download files from pages that don’t provide direct URLs to their files, like apkmirror.com and apkpure.com, but it works so well that I think it can even be used to just generally browse the web on your TV. I like using it enough that I’m planning to add favorites/bookmarks in the next version to save on the amount of typing that has to be done.
I’m really happy with the new version of Downloader and I hope everyone finds it even more useful than before. Being able to just browse to and click a download link, instead of having to know and type in the exact download URL of the APK file you want, should make sideloading even easier. Thank you to everyone who has donated through the donation buttons on the app’s home screen. It is completely thanks to your generosity that I am able to add new features like the browser, while still keeping the app 100% free without any ads. Please consider donating so that I can continue to add new features and improve the app. You can see a list of all the changes in this new version, as well as download the APK for sideloading on non-Fire TV devices, at AFTVnews.com/Downloader.