Toshiba reveals its first Fire TV Smart TV with hands-free Alexa voice control

As promised when Amazon announced its own hands-free Fire TV Smart TVs, Toshiba has revealed it’s first flagship TV with hands-free Alexa capabilities that can be controlled by voice, without needing to pick up the remote. The Toshiba M550 Series TVs, as they are called, feature an array of 4 microphones, a physical mute switch, and multi-color LED indicator lights along the bottom center to communicate if the TV is muted or listening as a result of hearing its wake word. The 4K TVs, which will be available in 55, 65, and 75-inch sizes, feature LED backlighting with full-array local dimming and support for Dolby Vision, HDR10+, and HDR content.

While these new Fire TV Smart TVs are labeled with Toshiba branding, and I’ll continue to refer to them as Toshiba TVs, they are actually made by Hisense and closely resemble other Hisense TVs, apart from the microphone array that is unique to these Fire TV Smart TVs. Hisense has licensed the Toshiba name for these TVs, possibly to benefit from the existing lineup of Toshiba Fire TV Smart TVs that stretch back to 2018. The shuffling of TV brand names like this has become quite common, as even Amazon’s own Omni Series and 4-Series Fire TV Smart TVs appear to be made by TCL.

Branding aside, these new “Toshiba” TVs appear to be among the better models using Amazon’s Fire TV operating system, as, among other things, they support all major high dynamic range formats. The 4 HDMI ports, of which one supports eARC, are all HDMI 2.1 ports with auto low latency mode for gaming. While not directly built into the TVs, there is support for composite analog video through an included breakout cable. Other ports include a headphone jack, optical audio out, and RF coaxial for the built-in over-the-air TV tuner.

Connectivity comes in the form of Wi-Fi, which I assume to be 802.11ac but I have not been able to confirm it, and an Ethernet port, which, again, I can’t determine the speed. The TV will also ship with Apple AirPlay 2 support, like most new Fire TV Smart TVs. There’s also Bluetooth, of course, and a single USB 2.0 port for accessing media on external storage. Lastly, the TV has an IR extender port and included IR blaster, much like the Fire TV Cube, so that it can control home theater devices over IR if they do not support HDMI-CEC, which these TVs also support.

The included remote is the standard Fire TV Smart TV remote that comes with all TVs running Amazon’s operating system. Note that the 2 bottom app buttons are unknown and will likely not match the ones in the image above. Pricing and availability for these TVs is still unclear. The 55-inch model is currently listed at $799.99 with no release date. The 65-inch and 75-inch models, which Amazon has confirmed will also be available, have not made an appearance yet.

5 comments
  1. Keith says:

    Internal storage still at 8GB?

  2. Keith says:

    Maybe this will be the norm now.
    We’ll finally start to see storage comparable to what we had on phones back in 2014…not the 32 but the 16 GB version.
    Baby steps.

  3. Tony says:

    I’d like some more information on the new hands-free Alexa hands-free Toshiba M5 50 UHD 4K smart TV (which I’ve actually viewed at Best Buy and has, honestly, one of the better pictures among the $1K-$2Kmsrp TVs… especially considering it’s & the lower priced end of the “higher-end” – Full array dimming LED, HDR plus, HDR 10, 120Hertz Refesh Rate* etc…ALL the things your $1K+ units have – an MSRP of only $1000 ($999.99)… Not to mention it’s usually on sell @ Best Buy, Amazon.

    * I work in The technology sector and just a suggestion for one of your articles: this complete bullshit about 240 or 480 refresh rates should be touched on which such is absolutely absurd since no human being, perfect or otherwise, can recognize refresh rates of 240 and above; it’s merely a gimmick. 60 and 120 are legitimate but 240 and above are nowhere in the realm of realistic; I won’t go into the logistics and science behind it but it’s just not possible!!!! I think manufactures that tout 240, 480 and the lake should be called out on their BS so that consumers know it’s nothing more than a “sales ploy!!!” Anyway…

    U really have a great review/article on this awesome M550 set: https://www.aftvnews.com/toshiba-reveals-its-first-fire-tv-smart-tv-with-hands-free-alexa-voice-control/

    Thank you In-Advance,

    Tony

    PS: I do have one question I wish you would answer for me since I have done a cursory glance on Google and cannot find any article on it whatsoever:

    The United States version of this television set is in 550 —>> “KU”. The, either a European model or the Indian model which ends in “KP” actually has a sound bar built into it meaning, along with the downfiring speakers, literally on the back of the television set which is a excellent place especially if wall-mounted, resides a subwoofer speaker! This would be freaking awesome four several reasons, one, notwithstanding the fact that I have found that many people, especially those older than myself – I am a either older millennial or Xennial/Dec 1977; 2 yrs “shy of 1980) -do NOT like the idea of having to mount a separate sound bar; they just won’t go for it. My parents are perfect examples of this I’ll bet they weren’t that great sound but refuse a sound bar since both their televisions are wall-mounted. They think that a sound bar is an eyesore which, has some merit. Anyway my question is why is this unit only available and presumably India or Europe? Why are United States – I use the word prevented because it’s not obvious where to find it but no doubt your researchers can – customers not allowed to purchase this version? Also, it’s an android television set which is preferable to a fire TV. Don’t get me wrong, I like Fire TV but one of its drawbacks, just like Roku, is the two biggest platforms, as they grow, need funding and both platforms, especially fire, has literally gotten so out of control with constant ads for television shows you can’t hardly pay attention to what you’re looking for because you’re bombarded with their ads for various shows. And yes, working in the tech industry, I’m aware and know how to install a a different launcher that is, and get a more “True Android Television ” set but not very many people know how to load APK‘s, etc. Moreover, such, as U know, involves turning off updates (generally, not a preferable thing to do but sometimes said updates are pathetic restrictions, in this case, by Amazon as though they don’t have enough already!!!!) b/c, in fact I just read tonight, that amazon is releasing updates to block people from doing this for obvious reasons it’s probably a great source of income for them but annoying as hell to us. Anyway Toshiba Inc 550 -KP unit is an android only television which is certainly preferable. I would very much like your researchers to explain why this is and how to go about getting the KP version without having to import it from across the other side of the world which would be financially implausible; shipping, import taxes, etc. this $1000 MSRP TV would turn into a $2000 TV if I had to import :duty taxeS from India which is absurd. With the Internet, and the companies in the United States that carry foreign products, there should be a way to get one here. Please help me on this as I read/support website.

    M550 w/ BUILT IN Soundbars w/ SUBWOOFER SPEAKER Mounted on back of TV(!!!):
    Presumably from India, I think (despite the VERY misleading “.com” domain which is not hard to get anymore but I don’t like it; foreign companies, presumably???), intentionally misead you in this manner; where they’re located, IOW… didn’t used to be this way as you probably know!!!): https://www.google.com/search?q=images+of+Toshiba+-+65%22+Class+M550+Series+LED+4K+UHD+Smart+Fire&rlz=1CDGOYI_enUS927US928&oq=images+of+Toshiba+-+65%22+Class+M550+Series+LED+4K+UHD+Smart+Fire&aqs=chrome..69i57.14504j0j7&hl=en-US&sourceid=chrome-mobile&ie=UTF-8#fpstate=ive&vld=cid:aa0e4133,vid:fp3N0cyQgLo,st:0

    • Daniel says:

      I returned it.
      Has a black screen issue when changing inputs or apps.

      Also had a very bad blooming when local dimming was on. It was really bad that when Netflix was loading I can clearly see 2 big white squares around the red N.

      But it looked pretty good and really crisp, I just didn’t trust it to last.

Leave a Reply to Daniel Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published.

*

Get AFTVnews articles in your inbox!

Get an email anytime a new article is published.
No Spam EVER and Cancel Anytime.

FOLLOW