Should you buy the 3rd generation Amazon Fire TV?

Deciding whether or not to buy the new 3rd generation Amazon Fire TV isn’t as easy as it has been with previous Fire TV models. While certain aspects of the new pendant-shaped Fire TV are superior to all previous models, other characteristics are inferior because Amazon chose to omit capabilities in order to lower its price. Whether you currently own a Fire TV or Fire TV Stick and are looking to upgrade, or you’re buying one for the first time, this article should help you decide if the new Fire TV is right for you.

Controversy surrounding the new Amazon Fire TV

Before getting into who should or shouldn’t buy the new Fire TV, it’s worth discussing some of the controversies surrounding it. When a new model of a device comes out, it’s usually better than the model it replaces in every way. That isn’t the case with the new Fire TV because Amazon chose to remove capabilities, that were present on the 2nd generation Fire TV, in order to reduce the launch retail price by 30%. That decision has disappointed many who wanted the new Fire TV to be better in every way than previous models.

Another reason why the new Fire TV has a bad reputation is Amazon’s decision to debut Fire OS 6 on the new hardware without first releasing a developer preview of the new operating system, like they did for Fire OS 5 prior to it debuting on the 2nd generation Fire TV. When the new Fire TV shipped, it was plagued with numerous bugs and incompatibilities that might have been avoidable if Fire OS 6 was first released to the public through a developer preview. Early adopters who pre-ordered the new Fire TV were rightfully disappointed with the new model’s issues at launch and have been very vocal against the new Fire TV ever since.

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^ Interactive chart. Click here for large static image version.

Since its release, the new Fire TV has received numerous software updates to address the issues that customers experienced at launch, but many made up their mind that it’s a device that should be avoided. The 2nd generation Fire TV experienced a similar streak of issues at launch and actually had poorer initial reviews than the new 3rd generation Fire TV, as shown in the chart above. The difference is that the Fire TV 2’s issues were mostly related to surround sound and its new remote, while the Fire TV 3’s issues had to do with poor video playback.

Fire TV 2 early adopters reviewed it poorly but were able to live with the issues until they were fixed because it could still perform its primary function of streaming video, however, since the Fire TV 3’s issues affected video playback, the device was initially unusable for some, resulting in very poor reviews during it’s first week. Now that its issues have been fixed through software updates, most Fire TV 3 owners are very happy with the device, as is evident by its climbing review rating.

Who should buy the Fire TV 3?

Now that you know a little about why some people hate the new Fire TV, here’s a breakdown of people in different situations and whether the Fir TV 3 is a good purchase for them.

First time Fire TV buyers

If you don’t own a Fire TV device, you’re probably deciding if you should buy the Amazon Fire TV or the Fire TV Stick. If you own a 4K TV or are planning to buy one within the next year, you should probably buy the Fire TV instead of the Fire TV Stick if your budget allows it. If you have a 1080p or 720p TV, and don’t plan to replace it soon, then you’re better off buying the Fire TV Stick. The main advantage of the Fire TV is its ability to play 4K and HDR content, which you won’t be able to take advantage of.

1st generation Fire TV Stick owners looking to upgrade

If you have the original 1st generation Fire TV Stick (which likely came with a non-voice remote), you will see a significant improvement by purchasing the new Amazon Fire TV or the 2nd generation Fire TV Stick. If you have a 4K TV or plan to buy one within the next year, you should buy the new Fire TV, but if your TV is 1080p or 720p and you’re happy with it, the current 2nd generation Fire TV Stick is probably a better buy. Both models will give you a voice remote for Alexa and a much snappier interface.

2nd generation Fire TV Stick owners looking to upgrade

If you own the current 2nd generation Amazon Fire TV Stick, you really should only upgrade to the new Fire TV if you have a 4K TV or plan to buy one within the next year. If you have or are planning to soon buy an HDR TV, then the new Fire TV makes even more sense for you. That said, there still isn’t that much 4K content and even less HDR content available. Prime Video and Netflix are the main sources for 4K and HDR shows, but even then it’s only their original shows that will take advantage of the new Fire TV’s improved video capabilities. If you watch mostly 1080p content, you’ll be perfectly happy sticking with the Fire TV Stick.

1st generation Fire TV owners looking to upgrade

If you have the original 1st generation Fire TV, you have the most difficult call to make on whether you should upgrade to the new Amazon Fire TV 3. If you have a 4K TV or are planning to buy one, you will probably be happier with the new Fire TV since it’s capable of 4K and HDR, however, it’s not a certainty. The 1st generation Fire TV has an optical audio port and supports external storage through its full-size USB port. If those are important to you, then you’ll probably want to stick with the Fire TV 1, even though it’s only a 1080p device. The Fire TV 1 is also a slightly more capable gaming system, so if you play some of the higher end games available in the Fire TV appstore, you’ll want to check whether or not they’re compatible with the Fire TV 3. Lastly, the Fire TV 1 has a built-in ethernet port, while the Fire TV 3 requires purchasing an external ethernet adapter if you want wired internet access. However, the Fire TV 3 has 802.11ac WiFi while the Fire TV 1 only has 802.11n, so you’ll achieve faster speeds through the Fire TV 3’s WiFi. If you don’t have or plan to buy a 4K TV soon, you’re better off sticking with the Fire TV 1, but be aware that it is the oldest Fire TV model and is about to turn 4 years old. Amazon still supports it with software updates, but that isn’t going to be the case forever. Once it stops being updated, which will probably happen soon, 3rd-party apps will slowly stop supporting it as well.

2nd generation Fire TV owners looking to upgrade

If you have a 2nd generation Fire TV, you likely should not upgrade to the new Fire TV. The only Fire TV 2 owners who should consider upgrading are ones with an HDR TV because that’s really the only thing the Fire TV 3 offers them. The Fire TV 3 is also able to play 4K content at 60fps, which the Fire TV 2 can only play at 30fps, but realistically, there is very little 4K 60fps content available for that to matter. Upgrading to the Fire TV 3 for HDR or 60fps 4K means you’ll lose your Fire TV 2’s micro SD card expandable storage, USB port for external drive access, and top-notch gaming capabilities. You’ll also lose the internal ethernet port and will have to use an external ethernet adapter if you want to maintain wired internet access. If you have a 1080p TV, there is no reason to replace your Fire TV 2 with a Fire TV 3.

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  1. Randy says:

    I’m waiting on the CUBE!!!

    • fred says:

      I would like to see an updated box without built in Alexa. Which will be useless since it will have to compete with the tv or Avr speakers.

      • clocks says:

        Agreed. Give me a faster box with better wifi, but Amazon can keep their Alexa listening device. I don’t want or need it. Like many others, I have started migrated some of my TVs to a Shield. Anyway, glad to see Elias finally give his thoughts on this device, and how it compares.

        One thing I want to know is if the wifi signal is better on FTV3, and how does it handle 4k compared to the FTV2 box. I have 1gb internet, and have been upgrading to 4k tvs. I also have a decent router. Still, I find that I have issues getting 4k on the FTV2, I think partly due to not being able to pull a consistently fast data stream.

        I have run speed tests via the Wifi Analyzer app, and usually it shows 40-43meg, but sometimes only 7-9meg. This is only about 35 feet or so from the router with only one wall obstructing the signal. My old LG G5 phone can pull over 200meg from the same location, so not sure why the FTV2 struggles to get a faster/consistent signal.

        Can anyone comment whether the FTV3 get a faster/stronger wifi connection? And does it have a easier time playing back 4k content? If it does, while I hate the dongle design and lack of usb/sd ports, I’d be tempted to get one via the Direct TV deal if it will help my 4k playback.

    • Sammy Bammy says:

      Agreed…I’m standing here waiting to scream ” Take My Money” for the cube……not releasing the FireTV/Echo hybrid is actually stopping me from buying Amazon product at the moment.

  2. Jp says:

    To summarize if your 4K tv supports hdr and you want that feature then upgrade nice feature not unhappy with my 3rd gen it’s better than both gen of the FireStick but no optical out and having to pay for connecting Ethernet to it are the downsides that don’t affect me too much. I am very happy with my Apple TV 4K though mainly because any movies app upgrades a large potion of my existing library to stream in 4K on it saving 100s of dollars in rebuying movies in 4K.

  3. Joe says:

    The only reason to order a Fire TV 3rd Generation is if the 2nd Generation Refurbished box is sold out.

  4. Jay says:

    This article is excellent. Not everyone shops for a streaming player by price. Performance and connection options are much more important to some of us.

    I’ve had to choose whether to live in the Amazon or Apple ecosystem. I’ve chosen Apple but it was Amazon who pushed me there. I’d much prefer to spend more time and money with Amazon and Prime Video, however, when Amazon’s goal is to provide inexpensive hardware that is just barely powerful enough and with stripped down features, that hardware does not meet my needs.

  5. Brian says:

    I moved on to the Nvidia Shield, yeah it comes with the price tag. But it is fully capable of doing anything you throw at it. I didn’t like the video playback from my Hdhomerun devices, do to the lack of mpeg2 support and de-interlacing. I know FT3 has that now, but I imagine it is probably on par with with the Mi Box, although Amazon has way better support. Not interested though they waited to long to support mpeg2.

    • Sammy Bammy says:

      I also have a Shield, but more companies are supporting Alexa vs Google Assistant at the moment.

    • James says:

      Same here. I moved on to a Nvidia Shield and will never look back. I was tired of waiting for the Cube or a better successor to the Fire TV 2. I own two 1st gen Fire TV boxes, two 1st gen Fire TV Sticks, and one 2nd gen Fire TV Stick. The Nvidia Shield blows everything out of the water. Yes it has a higher price tag but in many ways it is worth that price tag. Something to consider if you don’t want to wait around for Amazon to release their next device.

      • Brad C. says:

        Glad you are enjoying your NVIDIA Shield. I just returned mine as I could no longer stand the constant stuttering/dropped frames I was experiencing with video playback in most apps.

        According to the NVIDIA Shield forums, it appears I am not the only one that experienced this; seems this is a well-known issue amongst many Shield owners!

        Love the top-of-the-line specs of the Shield, but if I can’t stream with it, it’s pretty much useless.

    • Jdoe68 says:

      +1 ditto

      Skip these less capable and less versatile devices. For as many hours as you’ll spend using it, spend the extra one time $100 to get the Shield and make your life better.

  6. xnamkcor says:

    When the real 3rd generation is actually released, yes. Buy that. All that is on the market now is a Stick model with a misleading name.

  7. Charlie says:

    Thank you for the time and effort to put this together. As recently as two months ago I sold my FTV1 and upgraded to a second FTV2. The one I received was brand new, and though the upgrade was a modest one, it will be current longer. Also, I recently brought home the FTV3 when I found it for 49.99 at BestBuy. I had long ago decided I wouldn’t buy one, but …. After all the early bad reviews I was surprised that it is quite snappy and easily as quick as my FTV2’s. That being said it brought nothing really new to me, so I returned it and am happy with 2’s. If I had kept it I would have ordered the Ethernet adapter for it.

  8. fred says:

    Just replaced my First Generation box with the dongle($35 wth one month Direc tv now). Personally I think its fine. Not using it for 4k since my receiver can’t pass it and my Bluray has all the apps.Watching Direc tv now seems smoother even than my 2nd Generation box. I believe this has wireless ac which makes it better over my First Generation box.

    • BIGDEE73 says:

      Yeah the dtvnow deal is the only reason I got the 3, just arrived yesterday and seems a lot snappier than any gen stick. I wouldnt have paid full price though after all the horrid reviews.

  9. don says:

    bought one ftv3 but still waiting for an enhanced cube version

  10. Shawn says:

    If I may, let me break down in layman’s terms. Fire TV2 + 2nd Gen Fire TV Stick owner here. Per the advice of a reader, I prepaid $35 for one month to try out DirecTV (with intent to cancel and keep hardware), which currently incl. “free” Fire TV 3 hardware. I would not have otherwise paid the $49.99 “sale price” to upgrade from 2nd Gen Fire TV Stick, but now plan to get other family members introduced to Amazon ecosystem + gift them my 2nd Gen Fire Stick to try out. New Fire TV 3 was very plug ‘n play, and while minute, appeared to be noticeable bump in performance from 2nd Gen Fire TV Stick (processor was slightly snappier overall), with a bit more future proofing until (obvy) better Cube model and specs arrive – which may be soon given these specials and sale prices as of late.

    That said, for $35 and ability to try out DirecTV was well worth the investment as it allows my other family members to be introduced to the Amazon ecosystem (for better or for worse), while I can grow into and make use of 4K/HDR/Dolby capabilities of the Fire TV 3 where and when applicable over the next year. And I’m not buying into the Ethernet adapter BS that Amazon tried to pull, either, as WiFi just as fast if not faster. Shame they didn’t incl. this from the outset, however.

    Had you asked me months ago to upgrade I would have said no way given the software updates and hardware limitations that plague/plagued the Fire TV 3, but given the price point, I’m willing to pony up the cash until the Cube arrives.

    Link to DirecTV // Amazon Fire TV 3 Promotion:

  11. Tech3475 says:

    One option to consider may be games consoles.

    Last black ‘friday’, I got my dad an xbone s because it could run most of the streaming services he would want and has a uhd drive.

    Ive also used PS3s in the past for similar reasons and has outlasted other methods to stream such as a couple of younger dedicated bd drives which dropped prime video.

    I primarily use a shield myself, but even this (officially) lacks some of the services the Xbone has.

  12. Hackfleisch says:

    The thing is, Amazon wrecked it. The first two boxes were a revolution in usability and out of the box, plug n play, easiness – yet with alot of features built into a sleek little box.

    This new stick, that is what it really is, a new stick, lost me in all aspects. No ethernet built in, yet you are supposed to let it swing behind your big screen TV, which will reduce wifi reception behind all that interfering electronic further, making it even more inferior compared to ethernet connectivity.
    No sd slot, no USB, weaker CPU than the 2015 box – and no, not even cheap, when you take all that into consideration.

    It doesn’t stop at being overpriced hardware, you will also be annoyed by advertizing via the frontend on top – not to forget these trailers they now show when you play prime videos (only when you play them via Fire TV, my Amazon Prime Video App on the LG TV has no ads, nor trailers).

    If they don’t get their act together, I will just abandon the Fire TV altogether soon – after being an early adopter of the first box back then, after having gladly upgraded to the second box and after having praised it to friends and family so far.

    • Tony Ramirez says:

      I agree I now use my Apple TV for Prime video however on Sunday nights the app video quality is poor so I have to use the FTV3 dongle that day and I hate the forced ads for there dumb originals but Sunday nights I have no choice.

    • Rob says:

      “not to forget these trailers they now show when you play prime videos (only when you play them via Fire TV, my Amazon Prime Video App on the LG TV has no ads, nor trailers).”

      ^^This As if the banner ads on the home screen weren’t bad enough. I’ve had one foot in the Google ecosystem (Shield) and the other in Amazon’s (Fire TV 3 & 2, Echo dot), but this is pushing me firmly into Googles world. My Fire TV 3 is now a glorified Prime watchlist manager, and I will be replacing my Fire TV 2 in the bedroom with a Shield as well.

  13. James says:

    I can’t believe they dropped ethernet from this. I have several 2nd generation units already which we use all the time, but obviously they don’t support HDR.

    Lack of ethernet -ignoring flaky adapters- means I am disenchanted with Amazon. The echo built in with infrared emitter would be incredible but where is it?
    Also, in the UK, Apple TV seems to be the only source for purchasing or renting many new releases in (streamed) 4k HDR. If / when Apple supports Atmos and Amazon still haven’t sorted things out (built-in ethernet plus complete list of hdr new releases) , it will be an easier decision.

    I’m still bewildered Amazon isn’t using its retail power to get access to these rental titles. Amazon should be able to offer 4k hdr, 3d and regular 2d hd streams for rent or purchase. If it could do this well, it would be the go-to av device for most households. Not supporting all these formats in a well-equipped box is madness.

  14. Richard says:

    Got a 1 when released. Eventually rooted it and loved it. Got a 3 when released. Hate it because pf missing ports and closed access to things like Youtube TV. Looks like spider hanging out of the backside of my AVR. No USB expansion memory either.

    Tried a Sheild Pro but malfunctioned on arrival. Sent it back. Glad as I now see it’s discontinued. Think the guts are kind of old too.

    Waiting on my Channel Master Stream+ pre-ordered in December. Looking like they are here and will be shipped within the next few days. It has issues like MicroSD DVR and no Netflix but those are stated to be going away. Ut does have USB, Optical, and Ethernet making it much more usable then Amazon’s current dongle.

    Best thing is it Android 7 TV so it should be pretty open. specs here:

    I am still all in with Amazon Prime but resent their closed TV Eco-system.

  15. chicagobd says:

    what kind of research and development team do they have ? Seriously why on earth would they release a new device that goes backwards in features. Who ever gave there blessing to release the latest fire tv should be fired. WOW what a disappointment. Ethernet for streaming is a must have feature.

    • hegemon13 says:

      No, it’s really not anymore. My AC router connects supplies a steady 300mbps stream over wifi, and surpasses 100 at the farthest corner of my house. Ethernet on most streaming devices is 10/100. Up until a couple years ago, I was in agreement, but wifi performance has finally caught up with streaming.

      If it really doesn’t work for you, they do offer a $15 adapter. But then, yeah, it’s only $15 less than the previous, better Fire TV. This should have been a third, “in between” model (Fire TV Mini, or something), and preserved the Fire TV branding for the flagship streamer.

  16. SWKerr says:

    I have 5 FireTVs but unless something changes they are on the way out. The main problem I have is the lack of YouTube and YouTube TV support. YouTube support is critical to me.

    Also: I bought a Roku a few months ago and although the interface is not as slick it is functional and the new Remote that controls the TV power and volume now a requirement for me. I am not going to buy another FireTV device unless they add the TV power and volume controls to the Fire remote. I have a Flirc on the FireTV 2 devices that allow me to use a universal remote but that solution would be awkward on the new stick devices.

    Lastly: If they enhanced the remote and fixed the YouTube mess I would still probably not upgrade. I want a device more like the FireTV 2 with wired connection built in. Alexa would be nice but I can control it now with a echo dot although improvements on the voice control would be nice.

    • Ruben says:

      Best youtube solution with 4k support and constant update.

      • Tony Ramirez says:

        That you have to sideload again whenever there is a update and it is is updated every few days. Had enough and just used my Roku or Apple TV for YouTube.

        • Ruben says:

          Actually no it updates it self sideload once and it prompts for update easy and quick resolution selection even better then the original app. There even another youtube mobile in the store. Roku has good support but no apk support is a deal breaker for me.

      • Charlie says:

        This kind of seems like spam and the exact same post popped up recently.

        • Charlie says:

          Probably wrong though. Just ignore my comment.

        • Ruben Garcia says:

          Is not spam just very happy with replacement and like to give info to the community for alternatives. I use youtube a lot and the device would be much useless without it.

          • Charlie says:

            Definitely agree the Youtube app is very important. Frankly, I think I would give up Netflix before I gave up Youtube. The update to the Silk browser seems to work well with the app now.

    • Bob says:

      The You Tube issue is on Google. So when you say fix the mess, contact Google. Have you used the Silk Browser?

      • SWKerr says:

        There is probably shared blame on the YouTube issue but the majority of it is on Amazon. It is a revenue sharing issue and at some level a control issue on the developing TV platforms.

        And I have tired both the Silk and FireFox options and neither works particularly well. They need an App! Somewhat functional is not an option when you can have a better experience on every other platform.

        Shockingly right now my best overall; experience is on the X1. nVida Shield is too expensive and the MiBox just sucks. Apple TV is also too expensive and really not great but the touch remote is awlful. Roku and FireTV are the leaders and Amazon is falling behind. Google could catch up if they ever came to the market with a cheap Android TV stick. The Chromecast is simply not something people really like so much as is is cheap and functional.

        • Bob says:

          Okkkkkkk… Amazon is selling Chromecast again and Google hasn’t unblocked You Tube. Google did this sort of thing to Microsoft too. Sounds like over all you need to go outside and read a book.

          • Rob says:

            Where on Amazon do you see Chromecast? When I search on Amazon I see Chromecast like devices, but they aren’t Chromecasts. Just a bunch of knock offs that “support” chromecast features.

          • wolfmanbass says:

            Google haven’t blocked YouTube on the Fire TV, Amazon have decided to remove the functionality from the App. The App is made by Amazon not YouTube/Google. I’m running an older version of the Amazon made YouTube app and it works fine.

        • Ruben says:

          Theres an youtube mibile app on the amazon store or sideload smartv youtube app.

  17. Bob says:

    We got the newest Fire TV at Christmas. We like it a lot, works great. We have the newest Fire Stick, that works great too. Then we have the first Fire Stick, whew is that sloooow compared to the other devices.

    So what the Fire TV had issues when it first came out. Doesn’t know.. so anyone buying one now won’t have those issues.. hopefully though that won’t be a repeat on the next new Fire TV device. I doubt it, too much competition. A built in LAN port would have been nice. I bought the dongle adapter, bastards at Amazon for doing that.

  18. pmcd says:

    Bought the new FTV3 as it basically includes an HDMI cable which works with 4K HDR. Have a 2nd gen Fire TV, Shield TV ( latest) and Apple TV 4 and 4K. I don’t regret getting the FTV3 but compared to the Shield TV and Apple TV the whole Fire TZv line has become disappointing. The ads are becoming overwhelming and Amazon seems to be headed towards cheap ok hardware as opposed to excellent hardware. They did the same with their Fire tablets. Price over quality. Makes sense I suppose but I am afraid that both the Shield TV and Apple TV are a far better experience. Am not a big fan of Alexa in a Fire TV nor do I care for Siri or Google Assistant. The Shield and Apple TV 4K both have gigabit Ethernet which I really like. Mind you, wireless is improving to the point where wired connections may no longer matter at some point.

    Not optimistic about the Fire TV, but it is still a good product. The ads, though, are wrecking it.

  19. MarkuR74 says:

    I’m kinda stuck as I have and love my first gen Fire TV, but I may buy a new telly at some point, and it will be 4K, plus s I have 40 pounds sterling birthday money waiting to be spent. So when it goes on U.K. sale it will be tempting to buy, I don’t need one with Alexa built in.

    • Charlie says:

      I would not be afraid to buy the FTV3 now that it has all the updates. It is as fast as your FTV1 and with AC wireless it works well if you place it so it gets the best signal. It might be worth kicking in for the Ethernet adapter, though the branded one is in and out of stock all the time.

      • Bob says:

        I agree. The FTV3 is great and runs great. I did get the CAT5 dongle too. We already had an Amazon Prime account, so this was a no brainer.

  20. Tampa8 says:

    Nice comparison and explanation.

  21. AFTVnews says:

    Please keep arguments civil. I’ve deleted some comments.

  22. Jack says:

    This device should of been called “Fire TV Pendant (1st Gen.)”. Amazon really blew the marketing of this device, although sales look pretty good. I checked listing for this device on Amazon’s website and guess what? They compare this device to the Fire TV Stick (2nd Gen.), not the Fire TV (2nd Gen.) model, as you expect from the naming conventions. Hmmmm.
    Owner of Fire TV Stick (2nd Gen.) and Fire TV (2nd Gen.).

  23. badbob001 says:

    If you need to support playback of h265 10bit content, then your only choice is firetv 3. Firetv 2 also supports that, but that device is not sold anymore. The firetv stick 2 supports h265, but only 8bit content.

    • Bob says:

      Who even knows what that means? h265 10 bit? Like 90% of the average home tv watcher even has a clue what that is.

  24. bolski says:

    I don’t have a 4k TV, but the device was on sale for $49.99 so I thought it was a steal. I did purchase the Stick about a week before that for it’s normal price of $39.99. I was pleased with it overall but some things it had a hard time doing and was constantly rebooting. I had updated it with the latest software, etc but to no avail. Plus, it just seemed slow at times.

    When I saw the 4K go on sale for $49.99, I contemplated trading it in. Was it worth the extra $10? Looking over other reviews, just the hardware upgrade alone was apparently worth it. More games, better hardware, more memory, etc.

    So I got it. And I haven’t been disappointed. For me, I was coming from an old Roku device that can’t use the 5ghz band. I’m VERY happy with the 4k version of the Fire TV and I won’t look back. If you need to do basic streaming at 1080p, then the Fire Stick is fine, especially if they are not on sale. But, if they ever go on sale again (twice so far), I would completely recommend the 4k version, regardless of whether or not you have a 4k TV. The 4k content is sparse right now anyways except for Netflix and some Amazon stuff, but just having the upgrade path already there in case you DO upgrade to a 4k tv is nice, but overall, it’s more for the hardware upgrade you get between the stick and the 4k model. That hardware upgrade alone has allowed me to see more stable performance and less reboots and hangs than I got with the stick.

  25. MarkyR74 says:

    Hmm I’ve decided no t to buy the new Fire TV 3, it’s slower then my Fire TV 1 still, I think I’ll wait to see if the cube is launched and what it’s like, can ask for it for Christmas, I have an Echo Dot now too.
    I did try using my Xbox One S for streaming but it’s still not as convenient or fast to use as the Fire TV, the Xbox hard drive makes it slower.

    • Bob says:

      So, you didn’t buy the Fire TV3, but you know it’s slower than your 1? Come on. I have both the 1 and the 3rd.. the 3rd is blazing faster than the 1. Stop spreading FUD.

  26. shwru980r says:

    I bought the older remote without the microphone. Amazon records everything you say and transcribes it to text. The information is used for marketing and is subject to subpoena by law enforcement agencies.

  27. Jack says:

    Kodi with USB Flash Drive:
    TV Stick 2 – Works great. Gets my vote. I use a 32GB Flash Drive and store my videos there.
    Fire TV 3 – Does not see, can’t access the USB Flash Drive.
    Why? Since Android 6, third-party apps can no longer “directly access” storage like a USB Flash Drive. Apps must use the Storage Access Framework from Android. Fire TV 3 does in fact mount the drive.
    I came up with this workaround:
    Install VLC and set it as your default player.
    Install Total Commander and launch your video on the USB Flash Drive from Total Commander.
    Video should play. Total Commander is so outstanding. It can access USB Flash Drives no problem, without any plugins. They have added a new plugin for Dropbox and it works great from my Fire Devices (must be sideloaded).
    Thought some of you out might find this information useful.
    Great article Elias, thanks.
    Read more here:

  28. Sage says:

    The FireTv Cube uses the same internals as the 3rd gen FireTv – those looking for an “upgrade” to the FireTv Cube won’t find it, 2nd gen FireTV still outperforms both unfortunately…

    • badbob001 says:

      Depends on what you’re playing. In terms of video support, Gen 3 has an edge:

      gen 3:
      h.265: Hardware accelerated up to 3840x2160p (4K) @ 60fps, 35 Mbps, Main 10 Profile Level 5.1, Color space 8-bit and 10-bit input with HDR10 support in rendering pipelines.
      h.254: Hardware accelerated up to 3840x2160p @ 30fps or 1080p @ 60fps, 20 Mbps, High Profile up to Level 4.1.

      gen 2:
      h.265: Hardware accelerated up to 3840x2160p (4K) @ 30fps, 25 Mbps, Main 10 Profile Level 5.0, Color space 8-bit and 10-bit input but just 8-bit output.
      h.264: Hardware accelerated up to 1080p @ 30fps or 720p @ 60fps, 20 Mbps, High Profile up to Level 4

  29. Frank Nitty says:

    Fire TV Gen 2 all day

  30. jim says:

    Would like to see a VUDU app!!

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