How to PIN Password protect an Amazon Fire TV or Firestick

The Amazon Fire TV, Fire TV Stick, and Fire TV Edition televisions don’t technically have a way to just password protect the entire device from being used, like you would lock your phone or tablet. However, a recent change to the options for child profiles on the Fire TV does now provide a way to essentially lock out the regular Fire TV interface with a PIN code. Here is how to do it. Read more ›

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How to Enable or Disable the Profile Selection at wake on an Amazon Fire TV and Firestick

Amazon recently added the option for Fire TVs and Fire TV Sticks to always ask for a profile to be selected when the device wakes up. This was done so that the Fire TV’s regular interface can be locked out by default. If you want this capability or if you find it annoying, here is how to turn it on or off. Read more ›

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How to access a File Browser and Internal Storage on an Amazon Echo Show

As you may or may not know, the Amazon Echo Show line of smart displays run an OS based on Android. Despite my hopes and dreams, modding an Echo Show to do more than what it was originally intended to hasn’t been possible because the device is pretty locked down. A reader of AFTVnews by the name of Wilson C. just stumbled on a way to bring up Android’s default file manager and browser internal files on an Echo Show. Even though I haven’t thought of any use for this new peek behind the curtain of the Echo Show, here are instructions for how to do it, in hopes that someone else might think of something interesting to do with the information. Read more ›

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How to tell if Netflix, HBO, Disney+, or other streaming service is actually displaying 4K or 1080p video on a Fire TV or Firestick

It’s sometimes hard to tell if you’re getting the maximum resolution possible out of your streaming service of choice on an Amazon Fire TV, since they all dynamically adjust the picture quality based on your available bandwidth. Whether it’s a new Fire TV Stick Lite and you’re wondering if YouTube is showing 1080p video in a kids room at the edge of your WiFi network range, or it’s Prime Video on your Fire TV Cube and want to ensure you get full 4K video for movie night on your best TV, here is how to definitively know the exact video resolution being streamed. This method works for any streaming service on any Fire TV model, be it a newer Fire TV Cube, Firestick, older Fire TV box, or Toshiba/Insignia Fire TV Edition television. Read more ›

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How to update your sideloaded HBO Max on Amazon Fire TV and Firestick — Updated Feb. 2021 w/ Latest APK

Since HBO Max is not yet available in the Amazon Appstore, it must be sideloaded. Instructions for how to sideload the app can be found here, but you might be wondering how to update the app once you’ve already installed it. The process for updating is identical to sideloading. Simply open the Downloader app, enter the URL to the newer APK, download it, and install it. The new version will automatically update/replace the old version. You do not need to uninstall the existing version first. A new version 50.2.0.37 of HBO Max was just released and you can get it by entering bit.ly/firehbo (see update below) into the Downloader app. If you need more detailed instructions, follow this guide. Read more ›

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How to install Quibi on unsupported Amazon Fire TVs and Firesticks

An official Quibi app has just launched on some Fire TV devices, but they’ve excluded most Fire TVs and Fire TV Sticks from being able to install the app. If you’d like to sideload the app on any of these unsupported Fire TV models, just use my Downloader app and enter bit.ly/ftvq (Alternate Mirror: bit.ly/ftvqb) into the app’s URL field to download and install the Quibi APK. If you need a more detailed step-by-step instructions for sideloading, see this guide. Note that, since I don’t have a Quibi subscription, I have not checked to see if the app works on any of the unsupported Fire TV models, but I suspect it’ll work fine on at least some of them. Let everyone know in the comments if you have success sideloading the app and on which device.

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How to Sideload apps on the 2020 Chromecast with Google TV using Downloader


Google’s new 2020 Chromecast with Google TV has changed a lot about the underlying Android TV operating system that it runs on, but what hasn’t changed too much is the ability to sideload apps. Sideloading, which is the process of installing APK app files from a source other than the Google Play Store, is possible on the new Chromecast, but Google makes you jump through a few more steps than was previously necessary on Android TV. Here is a step-by-step guide for how to sideload apps using Downloader on the Chromecast with Google TV. Read more ›

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How to identify which model, year, generation Amazon Fire TV, Stick, Cube, Edition you have – Updated Oct. 2020

With all the different Amazon Fire TVs, Fire TV Sticks (a.k.a Firesticks), Fire TV Cubes, Fire TV Pendants, Fire TV Edition televisions, and Fire TV Edition soundbars that have been released over the last few years, it’s difficult for some people to figure out exactly which model, version, year, or generation device that they own. This guide will help you easily determine what you have. Read more ›

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How to add External USB OTG Storage and Move Apps on the Fire TV Stick Lite, Fire TV Stick 3, and Fire TV Cube


In Amazon’s current lineup of Fire TV models, the 2020 Fire TV Stick Lite, 2020 3rd-gen Fire TV Stick, and the Fire TV Cube (both 1st and 2nd-gen) support expanding their internal storage through the use of an external USB drive. Doing so allows you to move supported apps onto the external storage device to free up space on the Fire TV Stick and Fire TV Cube’s internal storage space. The Fire TV Stick 4K, while it does support external USB devices to some extent, does not currently support moving apps to external storage. Here are what accessories you need for external storage, instucritions for how to configure your Fire TV device correctly, and how to move apps off of the internal storage. Read more ›

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How to Sideload APK Apps on Amazon Fire TV, Stick, Stick Lite, Stick 4K, Cube, or Fire TV Edition with Downloader — Updated Sept. 2020

Installing apps that are not available in the Amazon Appstore, a.k.a sideloading apps, on Amazon Fire TV devices varies slightly depending on which model you are using. This guide covers how to sideload APKs on all models, including Fire TV boxes, Firestick, Fire TV Cubes, and Fire TV Edition televisions and soundbars. It has also been updated to cover the new 2020 Fire TV Stick 3 and Fire TV Stick Lite. Read more ›

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