When Hisense announced its first-ever Fire TV Smart TV last month, it was a breath of fresh air to see one of the worlds leading TV manufacturers join the Fire TV lineup. That’s one of the reasons why I called it the most important TV in Amazon’s Fire TV lineup. With impressive screen features like a Quantum Dot screen, Full-Array Local Dimming, a variable refresh rate, high peak brightness, Dolby Vision, and more, this TV was shaping up to be a cut above other Fire TV Smart TV models. Unfortunately, its differences only cut so deep because internal specs revealed today show that, under the hood, the Hisense U6HF Fire TV Smart TVs uses the same old guts that have been common in most Fire TV Smart TVs for the last two years.
According to Amazon’s developer documentation, which was updated today, the Hisense Fire TV Smart TV uses a MediaTek MTK T31 Cortex-A55 quad-core 1.5 GHz CPU and Mali-G52 MP1 GPU running at 504 MHz. This is the same SoC that first appeared in Toshiba and Insignia Fire TV Smart TVs in 2020. Since then, nearly every 4K Fire TV Smart TV has used this same old processor, including the 2021 Toshiba C350 Series TVs, the 2021 Toshiba M550 Series TVs, the 2021 Insignia F30 Series TVs, the 2021 Insignia F50 Series TVs, Amazon’s own 2021 Omni Sereis and 4-Series TVs, international Fire TV Smart TVs from JVC, OK, and others. The new Hisense Fire TV Smart TV is so similar to past Fire TV Smart TVs that Amazon didn’t even bother giving it a unique build model, which is used by developers to differentiate one device model from another, and, instead, chose to reuse the same build model it uses for the 2021 Toshiba C350 Series TVs.
In addition to having the same Soc, other unimproved specs that Hisense’s Fire TV Smart TVs share with nearly every 4K Fire TV Smart TV before them include 2GB of RAM, 802.11ac WiFi 5, and 10/100 Ethernet. If you were hoping for more memory, WiFi 6, or Gigabit Ethernet in the Hisense TVs, you’re out of luck. Like all Fire TV Smart TVs released in 2021 and the Fire TV Cube released in 2019, the Hisense Fire TV has 16GB of internal storage for apps and data, so it’s not the first Fire TV to ditch that trend either.
While these specs are certainly good enough to get the job done, which they have been doing for the last 2 years, I was definitely hoping for more from the first significant new Fire TV Smart TV manufacturer to join the lineup since Best Buy ushered in Insignia and Toshiba in 2018. Hisense ticked a bunch of the right boxes with the display technology in its new U6HF Fire TV Smart TV but, unfortunately, didn’t continue that trend with any other aspects of the TV’s internals.
I suspect that taking this cookie-cutter approach to Hisense’s TV guts was done to reduce development time in order to get the TVs on shelves quickly. Amazon recently touted that it has gotten Fire TV Smart TV manufacturers “from kick off meeting to retail availability in less than six months.” I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that they’re referring to these Hisense TVs, since it seems like they just put a different LCD panel in a 2-year-old TV and called it a day. Hopefully, this was done just to get Hisense Fire TV Smart TVs off the ground quickly and that the next generation will be just as impressive on the inside as they are on the outside.