The benchmark results for a mysterious device simply named the “Amazon AFTS“, which just appeared on GFXBench, is very likely the next generation Amazon Fire TV
Stick. This possible Fire TV Stick 2 is boasting some impressive horsepower with benchmarking scores surpassing the original Amazon Fire TV box. It’s no surprise because, if the specs listed are accurate, the 2nd generation Fire TV Stick will be packing entirely upgraded components.
The new device has a MediaTek 1.5 GHz quad-core CPU. A considerable upgrade from the current Fire TV Stick’s Broadcom 1.0 GHz dual-core CPU. The new CPU is nearly identical to, but slightly more powerful than, the one in the latest Fire HD6 and Fire HD7 tablets introduced last September.
The area where this possible FTVS2 really differs from its predecessor is graphics. The new device packs a PowerVR GX6250 GPU. This is a dedicated GPU, where the current Fire TV Stick has much weaker graphics processing that is integrated into the CPU. The current Fire TV Stick’s lack of dedicated GPU makes it incompatible with about 30% of the Fire TV’s game library, including Minecraft, the Fire TV’s most popular game. If the benchmarks are accurate, this new CPU and GPU combo are about twice as powerful as the original Fire TV box, making it a superb gaming device.
GFXBench is reporting a peculiar 1.5 GB of RAM for the mystery device. My guess is the device actually has 2 GB of RAM, where 512 MB is being used by the GPU, resulting in a reading of only 1.5 GB. Either way, it’s a nice upgrade over the current model’s 1 GB of memory.
No surprise that internal storage appears to still be 8GB. The benchmark is reporting 4.8 GB of storage, which is likely the available space, and not the total space. It’s safe to assume the OS and a few apps are taking up about 3.2 GB since the benchmark for the original Fire TV shows it reporting about 5.5 GB of storage. The decision to not increase internal storage is disappointing, but expected from a company like Amazon, which is so focused on cloud storage.
As for the operating system, you’ll be happy to see the likely Fire TV Stick 2 is running a variation of the latest Android 5.1 Lollipop. Since Amazon recently announced that Fire OS 5, which powers Fire TV devices, is based on Android 5, it’s no surprise this new Amazon device is being tested with the latest operating system.
Finally, the device features listed on the page include Bluetooth and Wifi, which is what you’d expect from a non-smartphone/non-tablet Android device. The benchmark did not detect an accelerometer, camera, GPS, gyroscope, or proximity sensor; further solidifying that this is very likely a new TV based device from Amazon. The listing of a 6.9″ screen is very likely an incorrect artifact caused by testing a device without a built in screen using software meant for smartphones and tablets. The benchmark for the Fire TV also incorrectly lists the device as having a screen.
There is ample evidence that this device is some form of next generation Fire TV. The name “AFTS” and specs seem to indicate it is a new Fire TV Stick and not a new Fire TV. For me, the question isn’t whether this is the new Fire TV Stick, but rather, the question is, will these specs change before the device is released? We’ll have to wait and see but, if these specs are any indication, the next generation Fire TV Stick will be a beast of a device.
7/9/2015 Astute commenter Randy Oldman has pointed out that the MediaTek MT8173 CPU supports 4K video. All aboard the hype train!
8/21/2015 It’s looking more like this is a new Fire TV and not a new Fire TV Stick. The “S” in “Amazon AFTS” likely refers to the devices codename, and not the word “Stick”. The Fire TV was codenamed “Bueller” and referred to as the AFTB, while the Fire TV Stick was code named “Montoya” and referred to as the AFTM. It is likely this device has a codename that starts with an “S” which is why it’s labeled the AFTS. The CPU and GPU power would be more inline with a new Fire TV box and not a Fire TV Stick.
This sorta implies a FireTV2 box, doesn’t it?
Even more powerful, to justify a pricing differential.
Pricing might go higher on the Stick, too.
Especially if they keep the existing model around.
Upon further reflection, the benchmark cites a 6.9″ screen without touch. That’s an odd one.
Might it be a portable gaming device?
With the Anniversary coming up, maybe Bezos has a new market in mind?
Things are getting interesting in Fire world.
Well for the both portable or gaming device it shows considerable lack of features like accelerator sensors or GPS and so on. I doubt it would attract many customers with only Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.
Nintendo has long gotten by without either.
And once a game supports a gamepad it doesn’t need motion sensors.
The FireTV doesn’t use them.
Just speculating: Nintendo is ripe for the picking.
That’s just a quirk of testing a device that doesn’t have a screen using an app meant for smartphones and tablets.
For example, the Fire TV Benchmark by GFXBench lists a 13.8″ screen
If this new stick is more powerful than the actual existing box, then maybe it’s possible that they’ll only go with an updated stick. I’m not placing a bet either way, just something to consider.
Uhm … So where does the 6.9″ screen fits into this (theory)??
Well the Amazon Fire TV Specs for the site claims
” 1920 x 1080, 13.8″
no touchscreen but support external mouse, pointer or touch panel”
Why wouldn’t one believe this is a new box, rather than stick? Unless you know something you can’t say. :-)
If this is a new stick, I would assume BOTH the old stick and the box will be replaced by this, and they will just have one product going forward.
Hopefully they do the half price thing similar to the last time they released the stick. I’ll buy a few.
Replacing the two current Fire TVs with a new single model is a very likely possibility. The inclusion of an “S” in the devices “AFTS” name is the biggest indicator to me that this is a new Stick. If they did replace the two devices with one, I feel they wouldn’t keep “Stick” in the name, even if it’s in a stick form factor.
Then again, “AFTS” appears to just be an internal label, so it could not be a reflection of the actual name. Time will tell.
Yeah, I agree. I didn’t pick up on the acronym until after my post. These chips keeps getting smaller, so it makes sense they can replace both with the stick.
I look forward to the day that these can run off the tv, and don’t need separate power.
Or maybe the Amazon Fire Television System. Some like me won’t want to give up the HDMI, USB, and optical out ports of the box.
Forgot to add wire internet port in there too.
This chip supports 4K, in case you’re wondering.
Great find! Get hyped everyone!
Someone at AMZN is gonna have a bad day.
the Gfx specs don’t compare all that favourably with the nVidia Shield or even the Nexus Player for that matter. This better not be the AFTV 2.0.
It would be priced cheaper I would assume. If it does 4k than this is a winner in my book. Remember the nvidia shield is $200 for base model.
Yeah, the shield is too pricey IMO. The Nexus Player when it was on sale for $64 is a decent deal, but it appears to be back up to $100 for now.
But remember, the NVIDIA Shield comes with a very nice $60 game controller. So the comparable price difference between the Fire TV and Shield is really around $40-$50.
Here’s the GFX specs vs the Shield:
I think most of us will be more interested that it has hardware codec support for H.265 (HEVC) and VP9.
AC Wifi and USB-C/USB3 would also be appreciated.
@clocks: All my FTV Sticks are running perfectly without external power supply on all my TVs, monitors and projector using only the USB ports on the devices. ..
I think certain things they will not allow unless you plug into AC, like updating the firmware, etc… I got that message once before when I was using the USB off the tv.
If it is a stick and it’s going to replace both, I really hope they figure out a way to cram in optical out and an ethernet port… Not that ethernet is a make or break, but it sure is nice to have.
chromecast has a Ethernet enabled usb power adapter so maybe it can be made like that http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2015/07/googles-chromecast-gets-a-hardwired-ethernet-adapter/
My Fire TV works pretty well on WiFI, but you’re right. It’s nice to have Ethernet – I now use Kodi and a PC as back end to stream Live TV through my HomeRun HD to reocord. I sometimes get buffering issues on WiFi, but Ethernet keeps everything in check.
I wonder if it will just have one USB-C connector, and come with a usb-c to hdmi adapter, maybe a power adapter plug on the dongle for higher graphic use if needed for 4K/games.
I hope this doesn’t make our first gen aftv & stick obsolete anytime soon.
Hopefully support will continue on our 1st gen devices even after 2nd gen is a big success.
The power looks great but will the software be there to support it? I like my fire tv but it is lacking in the games department. The Nvidia shield console looks to be a real gamechanger as far as tv gaming devices. Amazon needs to step their game up in the game department if it hopes to be the leader of this niche market. Price will also be a factor here.
I was not happy with the wifi on my fire tv and use a powerline adaptor. So much better than wireless. Kodi also saw a huge performance improvement.
Which -powerline adaptor- do you use?
Ugh. Amazon just needs to make me a beta tester or something, so I don’t have to keep buying these things. :)
Which -powerline adaptor- do you use?
My fire tv stick, was great 2 years ago, now its horribly slow. Switched to Roku, love it, much nicer menu to navigate.