Missing Icon Bug remains present on new Fire TV interface — It’s actually a bit worse than before

I had high hopes that the new Fire TV interface would fix the existing bug that caused the icon of some sideloaded apps to be missing. Unfortunately, the bug remains and, worse yet, it’s actually a bigger issue in the new interface than it was in the old one.

This bug causes a broken image icon to appear on the Home screen of the Fire TV for some sideloaded apps. It also causes a gray grid-square icon to appear on the screen with all apps. So far, it only seems to affect Fire TV’s that are running Fire OS 7, which are the 2nd-gen Fire TV Cube, the 3rd-gen Fire TV Stick, the Fire TV Stick Lite, and some of the newest Fire TV Edition televisions. The bug also only appears to affect apps that store their icon in a certain way. I’ve come up with a solution for this bug, but, fair warning, it’s a very clunky and tedious workaround.

I don’t expect that this bug will appear on older Fire TV models running Fire OS 5 (like the 2nd-gen Fire TV Stick) and Fire OS 6 (like the Fire TV Stick 4K) once those devices receive the new interface. It seems like it’s an issue with Fire OS 7 specifically and not an issue with the new interface, but none of the Fire OS 5 and Fire OS 6 models have received the new interface yet, so there’s no way to know for sure.

While the issue was annoying on the old interface, it’s actually much more troublesome on the new interface. That’s because, with the new interface, the name of the app that is currently highlighted does not appear when highlighting one of the top 6 apps in the navigation menu. The app name is also not listed on the app grid screen where all apps are listed. So, if you have multiple apps installed that suffer from this issue, there is no way to differentiate between them on the two most common ways to access apps on the new interface.

Your best bet to differentiate apps with broken icons on the new interface is to scroll down to the “Recently Used Apps” row, which is the 3rd row down on the Home screen, and find your app there. Apart from the Settings screen, this is the only place in the new interface that still lists the name of the app being highlighted.

16 comments
  1. Eric says:

    Thank you for your explanation. I have had this problem since purchasing a new Fire Cube.
    I was hoping there was a simple solution.

    • Bv says:

      if you put the wolflauncher on it shows the pic of all apps.

      • Mr. Monty says:

        What is the “wolflauncher” app and what does it do?

        • Adrian Kemp says:

          Wolf Launcher is a clone of ATV Launcher, which provides a custom alternative home screen for displaying all installed apps. No icons suffer from interference and indeed they may be customized. The backdrop graphic may be customized using an imported image file.

          Apps can be organized in nameable categories or even hidden (if never used or to be kept secret) with a row of widgets available (pulls data from Weather apps). Has access to both Android and FireTV Settings

          Wolf Launcher works with shortcuts On the remote: the Home key launches Amazon stock launcher and a Long press Home reaches the Apps Mirroring Sleep Settings shortcuts page.

          Works best on FireOS 6 & 7 devices. If you have Recast the Live and DVR pages of the Amazon stock launcher must be accessed via the stock launcher.

    • Rich says:

      I think Amazon dose it on purpose so as to detour 3rd party app install.

    • Baps says:

      The FireTV 4k slim box (2nd gen) has been doing this for a while now. But it has mostly to do with the slow loading of the MicroSD that has the apps “stored” onto. Which is annoying. At first I thought 3rd party apps were disabled and not working anymore so I reinstalled them and showed up. I then knew it had to do with the data location of the file. Anyways, I either wait or just restart it if it takes more than 5 mins to load them. Annoying.

  2. Paul Sorensen says:

    Is this a bug in FireOS or the app? Sounds like the app. Side loading is potentially a security risk and app does not necessarily receive any quality control or compatibility checks. Most likely the app is targeted to Android rather than specifically FireOS. There are well-known differences. Not that I am a big fan of FireOS due these differences, BUT … Maybe you should report this as a bug to the app developer. I’d expect the reply would be, “we don’t support FireOS”

    • The Fire TV takes the package name of an app and uses it to see if the app exists in the Amazon appstore. If it does exist, then it downloads the app icon from Amazon’s server and displays that on the Home and App grid screens. If the app does not exist in the Amazon appstore, then the Fire TV fallsback to displaying the icon that is embedded in the app APK. There are several different directories in the APK that an icon can be stored in. Fire OS 5 and 6 correctly display the embedded icon regardless of which directory it’s stored in inside the APK. Fire OS 7 seems to only be able to display icons that are stored in some APK location but not others.

      • TechyChris says:

        I feel the real story here should be: Is this an “Intentional Bug”
        to discourage sideloading or just such a low priority it will never be fixed because Amazon’s stance would be if it’s not in our app store we don’t care.
        (Sounds crazy coming from a multi-billion dollar company but crazier things have happened!)
        Speaking of bugs: has the new interface resolved the issue of having to clear Recents TWICE just to get rid of them, super annoying and has been going on for years now.

        • Bingo says:

          hmm.. Does not seem intentional or ‘introduced’. Just looks like this bug is not getting prioritized for the fix since it neither benefits the app developers nor the customers. AFAIK – For Amazon sideloading feature is for app developers to test apps they are developing for Fire TV. While customers find it useful for side-loading that was not the intent. So they must be like – “Why do we need to fix it?”

          • ASCiiDiTY says:

            It would benefit Amazon directly. Because many people, including myself, are using custom launchers because of this, so they are missing out on showing us hundreds of adverts every time we use the device. If they fix it, I may move back.. maybe not.. they should of been more careful not to push people away in the first place.

    • Danny says:

      I have this issue alot on a 4k but I use a custom launcher and otg cable and thumb drive for extra storage, but sometimes wen I turn on my stick it sometimes doesn’t recognize the USB and all my side loaded apps appears like the grey tile in the pic, the way I usually fix is pull the power from the otg reset the drive put power back on otg & it’ll restart it and all is fixed I don’t know why this happens sometimes but its a pain especially after spending hrs customizing the launcher try looking at 88+ gray tiles‍♂️ amazon & there bs updates just leave our devices to us

  3. Rik Emmett says:

    I have the missing icon for the sideloaded peacock app on on my 2nd gen fire tv box.

  4. Dennis says:

    The new 6.2.7.7 also hosed up audio pass through for the firestick 4k (and probably others). Used to be able to play dts and all other formats pretty much passed through to the receiver untouched. Now, no sound on most formats and have to go to kodi 19 and change settings to transcode to dd+ to get surround sound. Not happy with this change at all.

  5. Kyle Earle says:

    Why did only one of my fire sticks update to the new interface? They’re the exact same sticks…

  6. Anthony Rossetti says:

    I am wondering if the 4k sticks will ever get fire OS 7
    i was looking to forward to it because it had better compatibility with expanding storage
    but now am not sure i want it

    i can not use a custom launcher because i use a recast and would lose the DVR and live TV interface

    i wonder if we could just install sideload launcher and pin it to the fist app , i wonder if side load launcher icon will show up or if it is one of the broken ones
    i only ever installed it on antdoid TV boxes never on the fire tv device

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