Fire TVs will soon have ads injected into search results

Amazon has been talking about Fire TV advertisement changes to streaming news outlets lately. One of the upcoming changes that stood out is, unfortunately, the addition of sponsored tiles to search results on Fire TV devices. The search result screen is one of the last Fire TV interfaces that has remained ad-free but that will change later this year when the new Fire TV AI voice search arrives. Once the new conversational voice search arrives, expect to see ads mixed in with your actual search results. Other Fire TV advertisement changes being made include allowing non-media and entertainment brands to advertise in the first slot of the Feature Rotator, which is the big banner ad that takes up the upper half of the Fire TV home screen. Advertisers will also be able to target ads at Fire TV users based on what genre of content they browse through.

  1. Brian says:

    I am looking for an alternative device to the fireTV due to the ads. I would like a device with similar functionality that can run Plex client app without ads. I looks like a shield is the best alternative. Any suggestions?

    • tech3475 says:

      On my Shield I have a replacement launcher so I have zero ads/guff on the home screen, I don’t know if other Android TV devices such as the newer Chromecasts can also do this but the app I use is on the Play Store.

      Said app is “Sideload Channel Launcher1” but I believe better alternatives exist now, plus I used adb when setting it up for reasons I can’t recall, but I also recall someone saying elsewhere that the newer app they use didn’t need this (sorry can’t recall which one).

      • WOT says:

        Sideload Channel Launcher 3 (and 4) work way better than the “gen 1” version. But yeah, it’s a great way to go ad-free

      • Adam says:

        FLauncher is a no fuss reasonably featured free launcher that is in the Google store. No side-loading necessary. Unsplash built in for attractive backgrounds.

  2. Erik says:

    Hey Amazon, I’ve got an idea: how about displaying a full screen ad every time an app is started? Or hey, do overlay ads in apps?

    Once a FireTV fan, I have now made the switch to Apple TV and I’m not looking back. Best decision, 100% content, no ads.

  3. Mike says:

    I’ve already found it MUCH easier to search with a browser on my laptop, tablet or even desktop. And much faster, too. I don’t think I’ve used the FireTV search in months.

  4. Dan G says:

    I’ve got a lot invested in Echo/Fire/Alexa/Kindle devices and not once has Amazon asked my permission to increase ads/fees/etc. Why isn’t this stuff opt-in? How has it not been a class action yet?

    • Freemz says:

      As do I, in every room and have invested in making my house a smart home, I’ve recently purchased a Chromecast with Google TV and it’s so much better, the colour is much better while watching stuff, and you can go to settings, put it in app only mode and all that shows on the home screen is your downloaded apps, nothing else. I got a Google Nest Hub too, does everything Echo does but can also stream music from YT Music, answer so many more questions, the only thing stopping me switching all my Echo Shows over is that Google Nest Hub can’t link to my Blink cameras or Ring doorbell.

  5. Donut says:

    This just further convinces me to do away with the Amazon stuff.
    I’ve been using Apple Music all year long because Amazon took away the Prime Music function. As limited of albums that there were, it was nice to have that limited selection on demand. So that caused my money and time to go to Apple, rather than convincing me to get Music Unlimited.

    Then they go about screwing with Prime Video with forcing ads. That had me giving my money to streaming services that dont have ads, rather than having me invest money into a premium Prime video tier.

    Now they are gonna screw with the Firestick interface. Thats got me swaying towards getting an AppleTV device.
    They are also ruining the Alexa features with certain third party gadgets, so again, I’m swaying towards switching over to a Siri enabled home setup.

    • Christine says:

      I’ve already gone the Apple route. I was already a user of iPhones, iPads, and Macbooks.

      I already find the Fire TV interface too cluttered and annoying. I bought a Fire smart TV on Prime Day 2022. Between the ad-cluttered interface, the endless notifications that you can’t completely turn off, and all the damned bloatware Amazon puts there that you can’t (easily) remove, it only took a few months to decide I was done. I reset the TV to factory settings and deregistered it from my Amazon account, now it is a “dumb” TV. I had to scan for antenna channels again, and then plugged in an Apple TV, a Roku, and a Blu-Ray player, and I’m much happier with it now. Nice enough TV, just the Fire interface sucks.

      With this new development, I am all the more glad I went this route. I also got rid of my Echo Dots, because Alexa can’t just do what I ask without making a million suggestions. How long before they force people to listen to ads on that? The HomePods are great, Siri just does what I ask and then shuts up.

  6. Tj says:

    With FireTVs becoming virtual billboards with ads I wonder if this will result in them becoming much cheaper than they already are?

  7. Steve says:

    Didn’t buy the new cube and won’t buy another Fire TV device because of all the pushy promos and ads. Imstream to avoid ads and when they are forced upon me I’ll go elsewhere.

    Amazon Prime is similar….I’ll go to the app to watch a specific show, but I will never browse for something to watch in it because half the time you find something interesting, when you go to play it it either costs $$ to rent, or I have to watch it with ads. Not happening, instead of continuing to browse, I’ll just leave the app.

    I’m not sure if companies will ever get it. I pay for streaming services to not have ads, when you try to force me to watch them, I’m gone.

  8. Mac says:

    Doesn’t this defeat the idea of a more sophisticated ai search function. If a portion of the results are ads why use it.

  9. tech3475 says:

    Now that I think about it, I wonder if people will start getting confused by these ad results?

    I’ve seen such things happen before at my retail job, someone comes up to me and says ‘why is this more expensive?’ Or ‘why can’t I find this?’. It turns out rather than just going onto our website, they just Google search ‘(company name) (product)’ and think the ad results are the actual answer they wanted.

    Obviously it’s not the exact same scenario, but I wouldn’t be surprised if people get confused by adverts for unrelated things.

  10. KraziJoe says:

    Up next! Ads in your Ads! Double the fun!

  11. Gabriel Leontine says:

    After years on Fire TV I decided to abandon it and go to Roku, very happy with the simple and direct experience of Roku OS and having features that I always expected to arrive on the Fire TV Stick and never arrived until now. These little things kept me away from the new generation of Sticks, I’ll still keep mine around to follow the system from afar. And I hope Panos Panay manages to bring new freshness to Fire TV.

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