Much like what was just announced for the Omni and 4-Series Fire TV Smart TVs, Amazon has announced that the Fire TV Stick 4K Max will be gaining support for Alexa Home Theater groups this month. This allows audio from the Firestick to be sent wirelessly to compatible Echo devices for a better home theater audio experience than your TV’s speakers can provide. However, when the feature arrives on the Fire TV Stick 4K Max, it also comes with an extra capability that allows you to hear not only the Firestick’s audio through Echo speakers, but the audio of all of your home theater devices, like cable boxes, game systems, and Blu-ray players.
Currently, the 3rd-gen Fire TV pendant, Fire TV Cube (1st & 2nd Gen), 3rd-gen Fire TV Stick, Fire TV Stick Lite, and Fire TV Stick 4K all support being added to an Alexa Home Theater group so that the Fire TV’s audio is heard through Echo speakers instead of your TV speakers. This is great, except it only works for Fire TV audio. Meaning, when you switch to watching a Blu-ray, or some other video source that isn’t the Fire TV, then you’re back to using your TV’s crummy speakers.
That shortcoming is being addressed when the Fire TV Stick 4K Max gains support for Alexa Home Theater groups “over the coming weeks.” If the Fire TV Stick 4K is connected to the HDMI eARC port on your TV, it will essentially serve as a wireless audio hub for your other home theater equipment. Audio from home theater equipment, like game consoles and set-top boxes, will go through your TV, be piped through the eARC port to the Fire TV Stick 4K Max, and then wirelessly transmitted out of your Echo speakers. This will allow all equipment to use your Echo speakers, much like a soundbar or AVR performs.
Once the feature arrives, you’ll be able to pair the Fire TV Stick 4K Max to Echo Studios, 4th-gen Echos, 3rd-gen Echos, 2nd-gen Echo Pluses, 4th-gen Echo Dots (both with or without a clock), and Echo Subs. This is done through the Alexa app by going to the Devices tab, plessing the plus sign in the upper right corner, and selecting to Combine Speakers.