Fire TV gains new Alexa commands for Thursday Night Football on Prime Video

The first regular season Thursday Night Football game between the San Diego Chargers and the Kansas City Chiefs kicks off tomorrow at 4pm PT and Amazon has added some new Alexa commands to make the experience a bit better on Fire TV devices. Of course, you can say “Alexa, play Thursday Night Football” to jump into the game but you can now also say “Alexa, open X-Ray” to see real-time access live stats appear on the right of the screen. If you don’t want to be distracted with on-screen stats, you can just ask Alexa for specific stats, like “Alexa, how many rushing yards do the Chiefs have today?“, “Alexa, who has the most tackles today?“, or “Alexa, who leads the NFL in touchdowns?“, and Alexa will reply with the answer without interrupting the game. As a reminder, Thursday Night Football is the first Prime Video content that can be recorded for viewing later. You can set games to record in the Prime Video app on Fire TV devices, or you can achieve the same thing by simply saying “Alexa, add Thursday Night Football to my watchlist.” Adding Amazon’s NFL coverage to your watchlist will make all game playback available “until 2023,” according to Amazon.

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Prime Video leans more into Dolby Vision HDR by adding support to both new and old Amazon Originals

When it comes to High Dynamic Range (HDR) formats, most experts agree that Dolby Vision is the superior format, edging out HDR10+ content and significantly outperforming HDR10 and HLG content. That’s why it’s unfortunate that Prime Video tends to favor HDR10 and HDR10+ as its format of choice, with the selection of Dolby Vision movies and TV shows available on the streaming service being quite sparse, especially when it comes to Amazon originals. That could finally be changing as Amazon has released its highly anticipated The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power series in Dolby Vision and, more surprisingly, gone back and added Dolby Vision to an older Amazon original series for the first time. Read more ›

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Get a $5 Prime Video credit for watching a 15 second ad on your Fire TV

You probably try to avoid the banner ads on Fire TV devices, but there’s one right now that will instantly earn you a $5 Prime Video credit for simply watching a 15-second video ad. The banner ad is for a Lincoln SUV and it is being shown to select Fire TV customers. Here is how to find the ad and earn your free credit. Read more ›

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Prime Video now has a built-in DVR option for select Live Streams

Amazon recently redesigned its Prime Video app across a multitude of devices and one of the new features that has been added is the option to record some live streams offered within the app, like you would with a cloud DVR. The first live events to become recordable are the Thursday Night Football games streaming exclusively on Prime Video this year. While you’ve always been able to pause and rewind these streams for up to 15 minutes, setting them to record within the Prime Video app now allows you to rewind and fast forward as much as you’d like, as well as replay the games from the beginning. Read more ›

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Amazon overhauls Prime Video app on Fire TVs and other devices

Amazon is giving its Prime Video app a full redesign. A newly overhauled app is starting to roll out now to Fire TV devices, as well as other streaming platforms like Roku, Apple TV, Android TV, and game consoles. The new design closely resembles other streaming apps, such as Netflix, with the navigation menu changed from being a horizontal menu across the top, so a slim vertical menu across the left side. Read more ›

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Amazon is adding fake CGI products as advertisements to scenes in Prime Video and Amazon Freevee

Amazon has unveiled a new advertising method, called Virtual Product Placement, where it is adding fake computer-generated products to scenes in Prime Video and Amazon Freevee content. The image above was provided by Amazon as an example where, presumably, the M&Ms on the counter did not exist when the scene was shot and have been digitally inserted after the fact to advertise the candy. The program is currently in open beta and already being used in Amazon’s own original content, such as Reacher, Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, the Bosch franchise, Making the Cut, and Leverage: Redemption. Henrik Bastin, CEO of Fabel Entertainment and executive producer of Bosch: Legacy, says “it creates the ability to film your series without thinking about all that is required with traditional placements during production. Instead, you can sit with the final cut and see where a product could be seamlessly and naturally integrated into the storytelling.”

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Amazon and Apple said to be top candidates for NFL Sunday Ticket streaming rights

Amazon and Apple are said to be the two front runners for NFL Sunday Ticket streaming rights for when DirecTV’s current deal expires in 2023, according to Fierce Video. Rights for NFL Sunday Ticket, the league’s out-of-market games service, is said to cost $2 billion per year for exclusive rights. Disney is said to be the other contender, but is reportedly not willing to pay as much as Apple or Amazon. Should Amazon land the deal, it would make Amazon quite the destination for football fans, as Amazon Prime Video already has exclusive rights to all Thursday Night Football games starting with the upcoming 2022 season and running through 2033.

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Amazon launches Prime Video app for Mac with offline downloads

Amazon has released a Prime Video app for Apple Mac computers, as spotted by The Verge. The app may seem unnecessary at first, since you have always been able to stream Prime Video through any browser, but the app does something the browser can’t, which is downloaded video for offline viewing. The app also supports native macOS features like AirPlay and Picture-in-Picture video. Your Mac will need to be running macOS version 11 (Big Sur) or greater to use the new Prime Video app.

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‘Hotel Transylvania 4’ is rumored to debut exclusively on Prime Video

Sony is allegedly in talks with Amazon to release Hotel Transylvania: Transformania, the fourth movie in the popular series, exclusively on Prime Video as an Amazon Original Movie, according to Variety. The movie was originally slated to open in theaters on Oct. 1st, but the surge in COVID cases has reportedly caused Sony to explore alternative releases, with Prime Video being the most likely platform. Sony has already made a similar arrangement with Amazon for the released of Cinderella, which will premiere exclusively on Prime Video on Sept. 3rd. Being the only major studio without a dedicated streaming service of its own, Sony has been making deals with Amazon, Netflix, Apple TV, HBO, and Hulu since 2020 for the release of its movies.

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Universal movies are coming exclusively to Prime Video and IMDb TV

Amazon and Universal have come to a multi-year agreement that will bring Universal films to Prime Video and IMDb TV, according to Deadline. The deal states that Universal’s live-action films, starting with 2022 releases, will stream exclusively on NBCUniversa’sl Peacock service during the 4 months after their theatrical release ends and then stream exclusively on Prime Video for 10 months, after which they will returning to Peacock. Universal’s animated films, such as those by DreamWorks and Illumination, will also eventually be available on Prime Video, but Netflix currently has first dibs to stream them after they leave Peacock. As for IMDb TV, Amazon’s ad-supported service, it will be streaming Universal’s 2020 and 2021 films. This deal also includes a collection of pre-2020 Universal films that will make their way to Prime Video or IMDb TV.

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