New 3rd-gen Fire TV Stick and Fire TV Stick Lite announced by Amazon

Amazon has announced the all-new 3rd generation Fire TV Stick and, for the first time, a new Fire TV Stick Lite model. These two new models for 2020 replace the outgoing 2nd-gen Fire TV Stick that first debuted in 2016. Both new devices share identical hardware, in regards to the streaming media player itself, which is based very closely on the much loved Fire TV Stick 4K. The new Fire TV Stick 3 carries the same price of $39.99 as the outgoing model and comes with the exact same Alexa voice remote that is included in the rest of Amazon’s Fire TV lineup, which features universal remote capabilities thanks to its built-in IR blaster and power/volume/mute buttons. The Fire TV Stick Lite is being introduced for the first time at $29.99, which is lower than any previous Fire TV model before it. The Firestick Lite comes with a new Alexa voice remote that forgoes device control buttons and adds a new Channel Guide button to make access live content easier.

As just mentioned, both the 3rd-gen Fire TV Stick and the Fire TV Stick Lite are identical from a hardware perspective. They pack in a MediaTek MT8695D quad-core CPU clocked at 1.7GHz, which is a 1080p variant of the MediaTek MT8695 in the Fire TV Stick 4K, so we should be able to expect very similar performance between the two, where the Fire TV Stick 4K is about 2x as powerful as the current 2nd-gen Fire TV Stick in certain benchmarks. Amazon has given a more conservative performance increase figure of 50% for the new Sticks versus the old Stick. These new 1080p Fire TV Sticks also use the PowerVR GE8300 GPU by Imagination Technologies, as is found in the Fire TV Stick 4K.

The new Firesticks still have 1GB of RAM, just like the outgoing model, but it is now faster DDR4 memory, instead of DDR3 like in the old model. Unfortunately, the new Fire TV Sticks still have only 8GB of internal storage, but they do now natively support external storage for storing apps and files through the use of an OTG cable, just like the Fire TV Cube supports. Connectivity on the new Sticks comes in the form of 802.11b/g/n/ac 2×2 MIMO, an optional external Ethernet adapter, and Bluetooth 5.0.

Video playback capabilities for the new Fire TV Sticks caps out at 1080p and 60FPS, so you’ll still need to spend the extra $10 on a Fire TV Stick 4K if you want 2160p video. However, you don’t need to spend more if you just want High Dynamic Range video because, for the first time, the basic Fire TV Stick does now support HDR, HDR10, and HLG video, but Dolby Vision is not supported.

One of the very few areas, outside the included remotes, that the Fire TV Stick 3 and the Fire TV Stick Lite differ in is audio processing. Both models support audio passthrough for various surround sound formats, such as Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, and Dolby Atmos, just as the outgoing Fire TV Stick does, but now the Fire TV Stick 3 also includes onboard Dolby audio decoding, which was previously only found on the Fire TV Stick 4K and Fire TV Cube. The Fire TV Stick Lite will now be the only Fire TV model limited to passthrough audio.

Speaking of differences between the 3rd-gen Fire TV Stick and the Fire TV Stick Lite, the primary difference between the two, apart from the price and Dolby audio capabilities, is the included remotes. The main Fire TV Stick comes with the exact same Alexa voice remote as is included in the current 2nd-gen Fire TV Stick, the Fire TV Stick 4K, and the Fire TV Stick Cube. Unlike old Fire TV remotes before it, this remote is capable of controlling TVs, soundbars, A/V receivers, and cable/satellite boxes thanks to its built-in IR blasters, power, volume, and mute buttons.

The remote included with the Fire TV Stick Lite is an all-new remote that drops the device control capabilities of the existing remote in order to help lower the price of the Fire TV Stick Lite to $29.99, compared to the $39.99 price of the Fire TV Stick 3. The new remote is the same shape and size as the existing remote and still includes Alexa voice capabilities. Another difference between the two remotes is the addition of a Channel Guide button on the Fire TV Stick Lite’s remote. This button opens the grid-based program guide which recently expanded to include YouTube TV, Hulu, Sling TV, and more. This button has been on Fire TV Edition television and soundbar remotes but makes its first appearance on a Fire TV streaming media player with this new Fire TV Stick Lite’s remote.

Both the new Fire TV Stick 3 and the Fire TV Stick Lite come with an Alexa voice remote, HDMI extender, USB power adapter, micro USB cable, and AAA batteries for the remote. They both run Fire OS 7, Amazon’s latest operating system which is based on Android 9 Pie. The Fire TV Stick is $39.99 and will be available in Canada, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The Fire TV Stick Lite is $29.99 and will be available in Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, India, Italy, Mexico, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Both models begin shipping next week on September 30 and are available to pre-order today.

Fire TV Stick Pre-Orders:
Fire TV Stick Lite Pre-Orders:

  1. clarence says:

    There was also mention of a new FireTV home page.
    Any info on that?
    “The Fire TV’s home screen is getting a big redesign”

  2. kevin wulff says:

    Is there a reason they still only come with 8gb of storage in the year 2020? Am I the only one who gets reminders that my storage is full and to delete apps? Can they at least go the apple route and have 2 different models? How much extra can 16gb of storage actually cost them

    • Bob says:

      I agree, we have 10 apps installed on ours and it’s always down to 500meg and then the CBS app or HBO App stutter all over. And I see the Screensaver app which I have set to NO always has about 400meg in it’s cache too.

      • deborah h garrison says:

        Go to utube an ask how to extend your memory with a memory stick works well and you can stop getting the freezing on your fire stick an delete an add more memory an it’s free!!!

    • clocks says:

      There is def a bug that makes space fill up. Been having issues with my sticks for over a year, and I barely have any apps installed.

      • Bob says:

        Clocks: And my wife thinks I’m just nuts about it LOL LOL

        So I’m not the only one.

        • clocks says:

          No, it’s not just us. I have seen several people mention it over the past 6+ months. I would think Amazon has to be aware of it, yet I am surprised they have not fixed it. People have speculated that old install APK files for apps and/or firmware updates are not being removed after installation.

          • EmoBrianEno says:

            I have found that to be the case with updates. Just clear out your Downloads directory and/or any 3rd party app sub directories. It’s depressing to consider entry level android devices released 10+ years ago had at least 16 gb and yet here we are in 2020 with a 3rd gen device still coming in at a paltry 8 gb. I highly doubt most devices will be able to handle the new game streaming service cache size.

      • Alex says:

        Natives apps are the ones that takes the storage or space from the stick it should be optional they just pop up

    • Laju8 says:

      Exactly!!!!! It’s ridiculous, I am sooooooo disappointed!!!!!

  3. Nick says:

    I think amazon knocked it out of the park in just how crappy of a release they can have. I am really disappointed in them, I thought your time there made some kind of an impression.. apparently, not!

  4. Bob says:

    Why does anyone buy a non 4K stick? Why does anyone make anything non 4K? I even see you can rent and buy movies from Amazon in SD… Hello? It’s almost 2021!

    So no new 4K Fire TV Stick???? I could care less about anything non 4K on Sept 24th 2020! And so should you.

  5. Terry says:

    Interesting about the Luna game service I remember purchasing the first fire TV gaming remote controller and gaming really never took off back then will be interesting to see if this version can do any better.

  6. Bob says:

    I just can’t believe no new 4K Fire Stick???? The current model is 2 years old now. And 8GB!

  7. Zeric says:

    It seems Amazon is fishing around trying to come up the most appealing features vs price, but instead of doing it through market surveys, they are just releasing products to see what “sticks”, pun intended.

    Here is my opinion, you only need two “fire stick” products:
    – High end, 4K with 2GB ram and 16GB or more flash, full HDR support, a remote with volume/mute/live/two programmable APP buttons (can bring up an APPs like hulu/netflix/disney/etc). Regular price $59, sale price $39
    – Low end, 1080p with 1GB ram and 8GB flash, remote with volume. Regular price $29, sale price $19.

    The target for the first would be living room tv or tv in a master bedroom. The lower would be one you for guest bedroom or kids room or to travel with.

  8. epic fail on live TV button, but no TV power and volume?!? what is the point.

  9. Greg says:

    What is the point of Dolby Atmos processing on the new Fire TV Stick, when Dolby Atmos sound is only included in Amazon video streams when viewing “4K/UHD” content ?

  10. stadi says:

    Micro USB in 2020? This should be a punishable offense. And no new 4k version? The Chromecast with Google TV stick (Sabrina) or whatever it’s called is almost here and is probably faster than the old 4k. If Google regularly releases such a device, I see no point in sticking with Amazon. Let’s see how they’ll compare.

  11. 666 says:

    Will the current 1080p Stick and 4K Stick be updated to the Fire OS 7?

  12. Leroy Carter says:

    Still 8 GB of storage, in today’s world? Nobody wants to mess with an otg cable and external storage.

  13. Gomer says:

    Does the “new” $39 firestick have 4K capability?

  14. Tom says:

    How can they continue to have only 8 GB of storage in the “new and improved” Fire stick? I know it’s all about money, and they want us to spend and spend some more, but this is ridiculous.

    • Rik Emmett says:

      You can add more storage with an OTG cable and a USB stick

      • Tom says:

        I know, but who wants to deal with that in 2021? They didn’t improve the 4K stick. I understand they want to diversify with a lower cost lite model, but this is disappointing in my humble opinion.

  15. Patrick Malone says:

    I’d rather Amazon solved their ongoing problems with the YouTubeTV app. Well documented problem of micro stuttering going on with firesticks for close to a year. Makes sports almost unwatchable.

  16. max says:

    So incredibly disappointing.

    It’s probably past time to look beyond all of these limited Amazon devices for a better streaming experience.

    • TechyChris says:

      Totally agree, I’ve been faithful to the brand but it’s time to leave the party. If I could afford Nvidia Shields (would need 3) I would go that route but Tivo Stream here I come, plus they support Amazon Prime Video without sideloading.

  17. Ian says:

    Very disappointed. To me, all the sticks just got a processor boost instead of a storage boost to 16GB that we’ve been hoping for years that they would address. I was hoping at least to be able to upgrade my Fire TV cube, but that’s on hold now as well. Don’t get me started on the new Echo Periods (Dots). This pandemic really messed with the Amazon developer’s creativity and innovative abilities this year.

    • Ian says:

      I’m actually going to look at this year as a Windows Me/Vista kind of year and really pray that Amazon follows up with something mind blowing next year.

  18. JFC says:

    Mind numbingly bad!!!

    If they want to go even more downmarket with the Lite device, go for it…

    But failing to address the storage issue, not updating the 4K stick, and then adding the new channel guide button feature to the Lite device and not the others just leaves me speechless.

    What were they thinking?

  19. Marty Stockdale says:

    I just bought FireTV Cube. 16 gb. External SDD with 64 gb. Took five mins to set up. Full 4k streaming. Why waste time on the stick at all? Cube is the far better option.

  20. Stefan says:

    Can you pair the Fire TV Stick Lite with the full fledged remote with buttons to control the TV?
    Having already the 2nd Generation of Fire TV Stick I could use that Remote with the new Lite

  21. Jay says:

    Will HDR in 1080P work automatically for all current 4K HDR programs, or would something need to be done with the design of the apps?

  22. Keith says:

    I see the two new sticks only have 1GB memory. The 4k has 1.5Gb memory and the Fire TV3 has 2.0Gb memory. I’m surprized how poorly the the fire TV 3 does considering it has twice the memory. Does memroy have little to do with the performance of the devices?

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