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Showing 1-10 of 29,589 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 33,362 reviews
I am not a casual user of on-demand content and devices. Having tried smart tv's from 3 brands, smart dvd/bluray players, Apple TV, WDTV, HTPC, Chromecast and too many other competing products to mention--for streaming content, before this box you really had two options (for a simple to use box that doesn't require additional items or tweaking):

First is Apple TV which is easy to use (interface) but Apple limits the content you can get greatly (including no Prime Streaming built in) and it lacks a lot in features as well and is slow. The reason for selecting Apple TV is if you have other apple products that unlock features (like Amazon's content).

The second option you could consider was Roku--which really means a Roku 3 box since it is heads and tails better than past Roku boxes in terms of remote and speed. Now Roku stands out with the most content and the most features of any box with the Roku 3. It is for that reason you will see me address the Roku 3 so often in this review.

I have added quick summaries of other options to make sure everyone knows about the other options out there.

WDTV: Are great for streaming your own content but not very user friendly.

Chromecast: Is very cheap at $35 but requires other items to use (no remote included!), is limited to 16 channels according to their own site with other content broadcast via Chrome's browser not at the same quality level. This does allow you to browse the internet on your tv and is amazing for the cost but is more of a niche market than FireTV/Roku/Apple TV. But if you can live with the short comings, it is worth a look at 1/3 the price of these devices.

Smart TVs: Most of these are FINE for occasional use but not nearly as pleasant to use daily like separate boxes. Normally you pay $150-$400+ extra for features that are found in these $100 boxes. I have not found a smart tv that is decent and is also a good value for what you are getting. The advantage is that you can use your TV remote to access the content. (and that is about it!)

HTPC: These are desktop computers or Mac Minis or Android Sticks that you load software on to stream video to your TV. These can add content that no normal streaming box can access, without giving up quality but they are only recommended for something comfortable with technology that doesn't mind fixing the issues that come up from time to time.

Video Game Consoles: Xbox/Playstations can access some of the content that streaming boxes do and have plenty of power to deliver the streams. The downside is the cost (unless you already have one) and the interfaces. These consoles are not designed to stream video exclusively so the interfaces are decent but can be clunky.

(You can use other options but frankly they aren't worth the hassle for the amount of hair pulling you would do.)

Now this Amazon product has changed everything. It might not be the box for you...but honestly there is a good chance that it SHOULD BE. This is a brand new category for Amazon and they got a lot right, but there are a few shortcomings (at least at launch) as well so read all of this to see what those are.

Amazon's Fire TV box

Pros:

+ Nothing else is this fast. While Roku 3 impressed the world, this raises the bar dramatically. With a quad core processor and 4 times the memory of any other streaming product, it speeds through menus, boots quicker, starts videos quicker and honestly has the muscle to not struggle with higher end resolutions and surround sound like other boxes can do at times. The best way I can explain it, you will have extra hours at the end of the year because this box is THAT much faster.

+ Voice search is amazing. It really works. Less using a four directional keypad to enter in titles is a real time saver and makes you wonder why this wasn't done before but it is only for Amazon content and VEVO (music videos) (at least for now). You can not use the voice search with Netflix for example.

+ Ready for gaming, well at least once you spend another $40. The $40 gaming controller feels a bit pricy for this type of gaming and really should be $25 or less in my opinion. That being said, this box has real games you would actually want to play instead of a VERY limited selection on Roku 3 but it is not a "REAL" console at $100 and honestly shouldn't be compared to them.

+ Better image quality? I know you are thinking I am imagining things or have changed my setup but both myself and my wife have noticed that generally (in different apps) the video is slightly sharper and clearer. We are using the exact same tv, settings, even the same HDMI cable that we used with the Roku 3 until we switched it for the Fire TV box. We have noticed that especially on poor quality feeds that the image quality is noticeably better than under the same feeds with Roku 3. Now I don't know if there is better graphic chips or if the bigger processor can do more tweaking while streaming but it seems to be something. As image quality is a huge deal for most folks (and normally us streamers have to suffer with "decent" quality) this is certainly worth noting. So far we have noticed this under Netflix, VEVO and Plex.

Cons:

- It lacks soul. Yes, soul. The Fire TV box and remote are built like a dvd player or appliance--cold, fast, efficient. Unlike Roku 3 where the box seems to have a bit of the personally of TiVo--it feels warmer, more inviting. Everything about this box is business like, including the interface and the lack of options to change it.

- The interface is more than merely "cold". It is simply less flashy/pretty than the Roku 3 interface. While fast, I am less tempted to wander around like I do on Roku 3. It seems like they are being pretty dependent on the voice search function which is great but it leaves you missing out on the random items you find along the way with the Roku 3 interface. I will update this more upon extended use.

- The voice search only works for Amazon's own content (and VEVO) and not most 3rd party channels like Netflix.

- The remote is not ready for gaming use, compared to the Roku 3 remote with gaming buttons when you turn the remote sideways and more sensors for detecting movements/motion.

- Another feature about the remote I don't care for is the use of Bluetooth instead of WIFI. Roku used to use Bluetooth on their former high end box but instead replaced it with wifi to increase battery life and to add the headphone jack in the remote. It will likely take a few weeks of use to report battery life but this has me concerned.

- No headphone jack function like Roku 3. Now to be honest, if you use that on the Roku 3 it can be a battery drain but it is a cool feature.

- Missing some popular channels at launch. There is no M-Go and no Vudu. In addition, the channel count is much less than Roku's at launch. (UPDATE: They now have HBO GO!)

- Channels operate differently on FireTV than the do on Roku 3. See my notes below for more information.

Overall:

This Fire TV box took so much from other company's products with only a few missing items. They focused on delivering smooth, fast performance with less frills than Roku 3 for the same price. While there are missing channels and features, the biggest failure for me PERSONALLY is the cost of the gaming controller. Without it, this box isn't ready for gaming but adding 40% more for the ability to try out the functionality seems pretty steep. Had Amazon included it with every Fire TV box, they would have sold a lot more games and had everyone calling the Roku 3 a poor value.

If you do not have any streaming box yet, I would HIGHLY recommend this box over every other product on the market right now. I don't make this endorsement lightly. I currently own 3 Roku 3 boxes because I liked them so much, until I used this Fire TV box. This box means Roku will have to really work on improving their product for Roku 4 or they will lose the high end market. (An update, my wife officially asked to replace the Roku 3 boxes with more Fire TV boxes tonight. Yes, these things are that good folks!)

If you have a Roku 3 box, really look at the missing channels and features--are they something you could give up for faster performance? (Also look at my notes on the features of the various common apps.) If the answer is yes, then grab one of these and try it. If no, wait to see if Amazon adds features/channels. At the very least, consider an Fire TV box for your next box.

I do not personally recommend Apple TV as they are still too slow and lack too many features and functions. Apple keeps promising something amazing but delivering minor improvements.

If you are on a budget and have an Android based tablet, consider Chromecast. It is a good value for the price but you do give up features and content to save on the cost compared to Roku 3 & Fire TV.

I am giving this box a 4.8 rating, compared to a 4.2 for Roku 3.

I will update this review regularly for a while, so check back for more information! Also if you have questions or comments, please feel free to ask them in the comments section. Either myself or other helpful people will do our best to respond to them.

UPDATE 1:

Based on comments, I wanted to add a few points.

Regarding comments that I received the item free or are paid by Amazon to write this review, etc.

I paid the full list price and local sales tax for this box (grrr). Nothing was provided to me nor was I paid anything to write about this device. I do not work for Amazon, I own my own company. For this item, I am just a customer. In fact, I didn't expect to even purchase a Fire TV prior to it being announced because I figured it would only deal with Amazon's own content which I feel is much weaker than Netflix. In fact, I have talked two different family members into getting Netflix over Amazon's Prime Streaming service in the past month alone.

HBO Go:
See below, but it is now supported!!!

UPDATE 2:

CHANNELS:
It needs to be said that some channels require cable/satellite subscriptions (to those channels) like HBO Go, Showtime, ESPN, etc. Even if you have HBO, it does not mean that your provider allows the HBO Go, so look into that before purchasing any box with that in mind. I do like the Bloomberg TV (not available on Roku 3) App which actually features a LIVE TV feature.

NETFLIX APP: Is the "older" style with the tall covers (like VHS boxes) instead of the "new" Netflix interface that uses short wide covers (like on Roku 3). Netflix has said they are moving everything to the new software but the Fire TV box doesn't have it yet. That makes comparing performance harder from Roku 3 to Fire TV. On my ISP provider Comcast (Netflix recently agreed to pay Comcast so they have faster streams to customers) I do not see a HUGE improvement in performance in buffing like you see on other channels. What it does seem to do is start in better quality and/or speed the improvement in quality. My guess is that the Netflix app needs to be tweaked to maximize the performance of this hardware. One positive with the FireTV app is that it plays the entire TV episode BEFORE switching to a small window with the countdown starting for the next episode. I can't tell you how many times I had to click, click, click and click just to see the end of an episode under Roku 3.

Also, the FireTV Netflix app has two features that were removed from the updated Roku app. Before going into a TV show, FireTV tells you how many total episodes that Netflix has. On the Roku it shows you the number of seasons instead. I personally prefer the number of episodes but clearly that is a personal preference. Another point worth mentioning is that the FireTV Netflix App shows you how many items you have in your list and what item number you are on. That information is missing from the Roku 3 Netflix app.

AMAZON PRIME CONTENT: Does not loop--a "feature" they should add (and likely will). This means once you get to the end, it just stops instead of keeping going.

VOICE SEARCH:
Voice search DOES cover some 3rd party content, despite everyone reporting it works on Amazon's content only. I have repeated confirmed it supports the VEVO app and will find music videos in that app. That may mean that other 3rd party apps are covered as well, or certainly might be able to be in the future. If you search for something that has PRIME content and VEVO content, it will default to the option with the most options. To switch to the other, simply arrow up and either left or right to see the music videos or PRIME search results.

OPTICAL OUT:
I noticed this box featured an optical out port but normally run everything through my LG TV (via HDMI) and then use an optical out to my receiver (so I never have to change the receiver's settings) so I wasn't excited about this addition to the Fire TV box over my Roku 3 boxes. I stand corrected. I decided to run my audio via the optical cable into the receiver directly from this Fire TV box (something that I can not do with Roku 3) and it fixed all random lip-sync issues I have from time to time on the Roku 3 box (and the same with the HDMI output on this box).

Now I know this is not a typical setup for many people but I do know that tons of people have lip-sync issues with HDMI connections so being able to bypass the HDMI minefield is much more important than I expected.

VEVO APP:
This app works better than the Roku 3 app performance wise...one quick example is that some content simply fails on the Roku 3 app--try watching Britney Spears's Work B**CH (don't make fun of me!). Vevo can play this video fine on YouTube and on the Fire TV app but struggles on Roku 3's app. SOME of VEVO's content is also available via VOICE SEARCH too.

REMOTE:
I do miss the jump back button on the remote that Roku 3 features. It is a tiny thing but it once you are used to jumping back to see that painting in the background or catch that line that you didn't hear because the phone rang, or someone was talking, you feel lost without it. UPDATE! They did include this feature but hid it abit. You simply double click the reward button to skip back. I haven't seen anyone else mention this tip so you saw it here first people!

I do like that the "enter" button is back in the center of the directional keys. This is the way it used to be on Roku boxes before someone at Roku decided to move it below the directional keys, so you have to move your thumb oddly to press it.

MULTITASKING:
What multitasking you ask? Since you haven't seen this advertised or mentioned elsewhere, I can understand your confusion but try this: Load a Pandora stream...then click on the HOME button and browse for movies/tv you want to watch. As long as you are in the Home/Amazon Prime content, you can browse WHILE Pandora continues playing. Now Pandora dies when you enter another APP like Netflix but it shows you that Multitasking is built into the operating system and may be utilized in future features. (Again, this TIP is only found here!)

Another update: This tip also works when browsing PLEX content before you play something. So even when utilizing a 3rd party app, it can keep going. When it changes to a new song, a small window pops up on the lower right hand side of the screen to tell you know the new song title and artist.

PLEX APP:
Compared to the Roku app, PLEX for FireTV is totally different. There are some cool features, like the backgrounds, the screensaver using your photos and the MUCH faster menuing (night and day from Roku 3) but I do miss the channels not requiring a couple clicks to switch to ONLINE to see. I do miss that clicking the play button doesn't play a clip, instead you select it (click) and then play it (second click).

SCREENSAVER:
FireTV has a screensaver that is honestly pretty cool in my opinion. I am not saying you can't do this with other boxes but no other box comes set up to display random photos (and includes a decent amount of beautiful photos as well.) This functionality covers 3rd party apps like Netflix and Plex too so you have a seamless slideshow no matter what you are using when it starts. This is the sort of thing you see on PCs not streaming boxes and it is a nice touch.

GAME CHANGING:
Many commenters have argued that this device is not gaming changing and many have rating my review not helpful because of that title.

I said "Nothing else is this fast" to which one commenter said, "Nobody cares how fast an streaming box is. That's not a game changer"

Actually using it you will see what I mean. This is the first time a company has put so much $$ into creating a very solidly made hardware device. Like a fast computer (which this basically is), it will depend on software that is written for it to fully show off its abilities.

When AMD created their first processor that competed directly with Intel's higher end processors, it was a game changer, correct?, because it changed the landscape of personal computers forever, lowered pricing, etc.

People will look back in 5 years at this moment and say Amazon's FireTV changed how consumer streaming video boxes were made (instead of barely enough processing power to stream, they became able to compete with HTPCs and Mac Minis). This is the beginning of a new generation of streaming boxes.

I said "Voice search is amazing." and they said "Not unique, by any means. My xbox, ps3, tablets, all have this, and all work amazingly."

Find one person who owns this that doesn't say this voice search works better than anything from Google, Apple or Microsoft. The fact that little old Amazon could out deliver those tech giants is SHOCKING. The fact this works via a tiny remote makes it very easy to get use to. There is no other product in this price range that does this and no other streaming box even offers it at any cost.

I said "Ready for gaming, well at least once you spend another $40" to which they said: "And stick to basic android games. No thanks. I have a REAL console (or a couple of them) that can play REAL games..."

This isn't meant to compete with more expensive game consoles. It is meant to bring gaming to streaming boxes, just like tablets/cellphones have brought gaming to millions. They have not replaced gaming consoles (and likely never will) just like this box will not have you ditch your gaming console either but instead it opens you up to tons of games you CAN'T play on that same console. Just imagine all the cheap under $5/free games you can enjoy on your FireTV box. As I said above in my main review, I think Amazon really should have thrown in the controller to really get peopling playing the games but I can understand why they needed to limit their losses.

Again, this is a best in class hardware device with real gaming and the best voice search on any tech device (and the only one for a streaming video box). Every future streaming box will be measured against this one. Tell me how that isn't game changing?

Please understand that everyone has different priorities and requirements so no one box is going to be perfect for everyone. I am attempting to do my best to address most of the many options and provide a decently balanced opinion of them.

UPDATE 3:

While I don't have time to read and answer every question these days, many helpful people are helping and I wanted to thank them.

Here are a few big recent changes:

HBO GO:
There is now an Fire TV app for this very desired service. I don't subsribe to HBO so I can't test the app yet but coming in April of 2015 you should be able to get HBO GO access without having the cable channel--a huge bonus to those cord cutters like me. Depending on cost, I might subscribe but I am not sure that it will be worth $10 or more to our household so we will have to wait on that one.

Amazon Music:
This launched after I wrote my first review. It currently allows you to play any songs you have digitally purchased from Amazon and most of them have lyrics that help create a near karaoke experience.
When that launched they still didn't have support for Amazon Prime free music but that has been added as well so now you can listen to commercial free, unedited music as part of your Prime service. You can select the actual songs unlike most free streaming services and you can skip or go back to any song you want--as much as you want.

Netflix:
This app has been updated to match the Roku 3 app. That is both good and bad. (I actually liked the "older" app style better but it is a personal opinion)
With the change of app, you now can listen to Pandora or other music like Prime while browsing netflix. (Can't do that on any other box).

Overall software:
They keep pushing minor updates regularly.

Competitors:

Fire TV Stick:
See my review below. And if it is helpful, please click on that button as it is getting buried right now so no one sees it. (Sad face)
http://www.amazon.com/review/R2W2X683AHAXUS/
Basically it is the best value around if you are on a budget unless you need the ability to surf the web on your TV like a Chromecast stick.

Everyone else has been sitting on their hands. There has been no substantial response to the Fire TV box or Fire TV stick that I know of. I have seen lots of discounts on Roku 3 like I predicted and some discounts on Fire TV box as well.

I expect we will start seeing some new products soon but I am a bit surprised that no one released a real challenger for the holiday season.

Hopefully this review has been helpful to you. If so, please let me know by clicking the button below. Remember you don't have to agree with everything I said to think it was helpful! ;)
5150+ comments| 26,949 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on April 7, 2014
I'm your typical middle-aged woman - I don't game, and I'm not super tech-savvy by any means....so take this review for what it is. The Fire TV was easy to install and I'm loving all the features, free movies, music and simple interface - this thing even has a screen saver that comes on when you're listening to music! We've always just had our Comcast cable service without DVR and occasionally used Comcast OnDemand to watch/rent movies - but I'll never watch from Comcast again. The voice recognition software is amazing and brought me to exactly what I was looking for every single time I searched. It's just so easy to find what you're looking for (unlike Comcast), and since I'm an Amazon Prime member most of what I want to view is free - oh and for the new release movies the cost to "rent" from Amazon is on average cheaper than Comcast OnDemand by a ~$1 or more. So happy with this purchase!
5150+ comments| 11,219 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on April 3, 2014
Having received my Fire TV today, I've been trying it out for the past couple of hours.

Setup was a no brainer. It required an update immediately so it did take about 15 minutes to have it in action but the process was very simple.

The image quality (movies and games) is excellent. I've tried several movies from Amazon Prime and they look and sound nearly Blu Ray quality as far as I can tell.

Navigation is very straightforward and it's generally easy to find anything you're looking for. Installation of games and apps goes very smoothly and generally pretty quickly.

The remote works very well. I haven't played with the voice search feature much yet, but when I have tried it, it worked well. The buttons on the remote are well thought out and I prefer it to the Apple TV remote.

I only have one gripe. As far as I can tell, there's no way to limit the list of movies and tv shows to what is available for Amazon Prime members. This makes it very inconvenient to find things that are free to watch. There are some categories that are limited to Prime (Most Popular on Prime, For Kids on Prime) I want to be able to just see what's available for Prime or at least be able to see by category what's available for Prime. I'm sure this isn't an oversight. I suspect Amazon wants to force us to look at everything and be tempted to buy/rent things but if they really want to compete with Netflix, they'll understand that we pay for our Prime membership to be able to watch free movies conveniently. A workaround is to do your searching on the web and then search specifically on the device.

Perhaps I just haven't found the way to search for Prime available content. I hope that's the case or I will really be disappointed.

Update 7/21/2014:

The latest software upgrade as significantly improved the device for Amazon Prime members - addressing most of my original complaints.

Now that there is an entire section dedicated to Prime content, it is much easier to find things without having to wade through pay to view content. I wouldn't mind seeing more 'categories' to search through, but don't want to diminish the improvement.

It's still not possible to search and return only Prime content. I think it should be possible to tell the device (when you search) that you only want returns from what is available for free to Prime members.

The new 'Music' option looks intriguing but seems to have no purpose at this point. Not sure why it was added, but I hope it grows into a useful feature given the new Prime Music package.

I would also like to see some sort of DLNA feature added. As one who rips all content that I buy (blu rays, dvds, cds) to a computer on my Network, I would very much like to be able to stream this material to the FireTV. Adding support for a connected USB device is not a solution for me. I have no intention of keeping two copies of all this material.
5150+ comments| 7,423 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
An Amazon.com official commented on the review below
on April 6, 2014
It seems to work fine so far (2 Days with it). What I don't like is how Amazon has made it so the"Prime" content is mixed with the "For Pay" content, with no easy way to just see what is ONLY "Prime" content. This is obviously made to divert you into buying more non Prime content...
Amazon, please give us a CLEAR way to view "Prime Only" if that's what we want. I know we can voice search for anything... and that's great, but sometimes we just want to "Go Fishing" and would like to fish in the "Prime" pond only. This is a pretty big deal when you compare this to competing (Think ROKU) products that let you do just that.
Hard to believe your competition does a better job with presenting your own content than you do. Maybe an update in the near future will "Fix" this.
5150+ comments| 5,911 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on April 8, 2014
I have or have used pretty much every streamer out there. This is my opinion of what this unit is all about.
1 - Selling amazon content, everything about the unit is directed to amazon content, the voice search only gives amazon, the menus all show mainly amazon content, etc. It is not unexpected, apple shows apple content. But it will be nice if they add the other apps into the voice search etc. because it is a sweet option.
2 - It is fast, smooth and a great box to use. Menus are fast and the app support should grow quickly. Amazon video is as advertised, FAST almost immediate start on everything I watched, and the quality looks great. They need more 5.1 content
Netflix seems to have more 5.1 on the same content. But for Prime members this is the box to have.
3 - No DTS No 24p No bitstream of HD audio (PLEX) or even surround at all on plex, but they are working on it.
4 - You can use the MOGA controllers, and they work great. If you have a android phone get the mogo, you can use it on both
and the pro is the version to get.
5- I really like the box, it needs a little help.
Netflix is the old ugly interface?? this box just came out and has the old interface from 6 months ago?? Not sure why?
VUDU needs to be on there , or amazon needs to join Ultraviolet. A lot of the movies you buy have the codes, and people have large collections of them, it is nice to have them on your streaming option. I know it is kind of competition to amazon but so is netflix. If amazon used ultraviolet then it would be fine as well.
HBO GO needs to be added, it is killing them without it. the other options have it and it is a huge omission. But that is a 2 fold issue anyway. Like showtime, it is up to providers to offer it, right now showtime app is useless to a ton of people as well, no direct tv, or cox, or many other subscription allow use on the fire tv. Even if it had hbo go, with this limitation it is useless to millions anyway.
And Music?? This one baffles me?? Amazon box with no access to your amazon music collection etc.
6- PLEX, It looks nice the app works but no 5.1 anything yet. Just 2 channel audio. they are working on the fix, and should be soon.
7 - Apple TV , If you have apple content and tied to apple IPhones tablets etc. it is the best option. The airplay access to content etc. Apple tv is the best option for apple users, no big surprise. HBO go, but no vudu and never will. Used to not be a big deal but most movies now are not including itunes copies, just ultraviolet. So itunes or amazon for content?? But amazon at least has the option to use other content with apps, etc. Apple is closed content as of now. But airplay does open up plex options etc. For the apps that can use it properly.
8 - ROKU 3 , Roku is nice, tons of content, etc. But to me it is just not polished, The apps look terrible to me, not hi-res,etc. But is works, Plex, hbo go,Vudu it pretty much has everything, just not as fast or elegant as the other options to me.

This box had potential to be great, the interface is nice, it is very fast, for prime members it is awesome. But they need a little more. Which I am sure they will get, it has only been out not even a week so there is nothing but upside from what I can see. The only thing that may sway me is the android tv. Open platform, should have all the apps, etc.
Time will tell but amazon PLEASE
HBO GO and SHOWTIME with access from more providers, right now it is pretty bad.
VUDU or join Ultraviolet
Voice Search across apps, Like ROKU does but with your sweet voice option.
But KUDOS so far a nice entry into a crowded arena.
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on February 4, 2015
I have to admit - at first I hated it, but I did not know how to maneuver through the main screen. Then I looked and it appeared that almost everything on there you have to Pay extra for! BUT- then I found the area on left called PRIME VIDEO- bam! that is where you find mostly free things to watch with your Prime membership. I was in my glory! then I went on my account on my desktop and found a few free games to put on there etc. Now we are very happy and watch our Amazon fire Tv all the time - We especially liked the Ancient Aliens series on there, the John Adams HBO series, Deadwood HBO series, and on & on. Lots of free movies too. You can get Pandora radio by getting the APP then signing in to it. (no you don't pay for Pandora) You can search by voice- Hold the button that has a microphone on it and hold till you are done talking- search by saying "Jack Nicholson" and tons of Jack's movies pop up- then you scroll through to decide -some may be free some pay movies. We adore the Galaxy Bowling game- can play with 1 or up to 4 people. We bought package with remote and game controller - here is link to what the controls/buttons do: https://developer.amazon.com/public/solutions/devices/fire-tv/docs/controller-behavior-guidelines
THE ONLY CON for the Amazon Fire TV: You CANNOT SHUT IT OFF/ON no button it gets fairly hot- so I didn't like the idea of it staying on all the time! SO: you either unplug it every time (which is a big pain) OR Go to HOME SCREEN--- then scroll down to the SETTINGS then to SYSTEM - then SLEEP should be yellow (highlighted) Hit ENTER (the middle of that round part on remote) It will put Fire TV to SLEEP ---- But don't touch any buttons after this on remote or game controller-- or it will wake it up again!
My husband looked at the Amazon Fire TV Holders that hang on the back of the TV Vents: Voila ---- he made one for free out of Chicken wire with a few other wires attached at the top to hold it sturdy onto the back of our tv. Keeps it nice and cool since it sits in the little basket with lots of holes and room.
BE WARNED: The HILL CLIMB RACE game can be addictive! My husband who never plays games could not stop playing till he got to a certain level. He has not touched it since! (says he gets tooooo wired playing it)

UPDATE 2/17/15--------
Amazon gets you hooked on FREE series things like ANCIENT ALIENS series and Now all of a sudden BAM - starts Charging $$$ for each one or a whopping $34.95 for ONE Season! I called Amazon today and the gal said Amazon no longer has agreement with HISTORY CHANNEL and also BBC. Both of these are why we loved the Fire Tv unit. Not any more! May wrap it up and sell on EBAY if this keeps up!
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on November 25, 2014
This box is not performing at the level that it should be considering all that it possesses inside. I have returned one in hopes that the problem was just that one box, but unfortunately the second one that they sent me has all the same problems. Both of them left apps running in the background and thus overworking the ram memory. After running multiple apps, at seperate times of coarse, like hulu, netflix, twitch, mlb, nba, twit, vevo, youtube and amazon instant are my constant regulars, when returning to one later on they wouldn't load they would just open where i left off. Over time after opening enough apps it just begins to fail to play video. This happened repeatedly with the message "cannot play this video". Worst of all it would happen to hulu, netflix, and amazon mostly. To get this not to happen i would have to go into the settings and go to the applications section and manually start to "force quit" the apps that had been used. And of coarse i could unplug the thing and that did the same thing, but none of this should have to be done. Also when going into each app i found that certain apps would begin to build up a very large cashe. 4 to 5 times the size of the app sometimes.
I also own three roku 2s & a apple tv, none of them do this. They actually have a reset inside the main menu that basically does a refresh. The fire has a "factory reset" witch will fix the problems but also removes ALL settings! I really wanted this thing to work for the gaming aspect alone. Yes i ordered the controller to witch is nice. Ive been on the phone with support and mentioned the possibility of a software update to fix these problems but they didnt really have any answers.
I actually dont know why if thats really the problem, then that means there should be many others out there with the same issues and i would have thought by now there would have been a fix sent out.
Wish i would have just upgraded to a roku 3!
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on April 27, 2014
I had intended to use this for Netflix and other subscription services which I already have. While it's possible to do this, the voice interface does not work with these services, it only returns results from Amazon instant video, most of which must be purchased. I was willing to give Amazon video a try, since I'd heard that a lot of content was included with my Prime membership. It turns out that I couldn't find one single thing, except for very few shows actually produced by Amazon, that was available without an additional charge. Even searching the web for free movies on Amazon Prime, I found that all of the results had since ceased to be free.

What's even more irritating, however, is that along with the Amazon-only search results, you also see a "more ways to watch" button, implying that it will tell you whether the content is available through another service. In reality, "more ways to watch" consistently neglects to show you results from other services, such as Netflix, even when they are available! This is blatantly misleading, an obvious attempt to defraud consumers into purchasing content that they already have access to. It's insulting.

Moreover, the overall performance and interface experience are disappointing. Non-amazon sources such as Netflix and Hulu Plus are apps, and their interfaces are not as sleek or consistent as the primary one. Also, while some reviews claim that you will spend less time waiting for videos to load, my experience has been the opposite. On several occasions, I've had Netflix videos become riddled with frequent, seemingly endless interruptions for buffering, and then gone to my computer and had the same video available immediately and without interruption.

In short, Fire TV is little more than a portal for purchasing content, a la carte, from Amazon. If that's what Amazon is going for, this device should be provided at no charge, since one could easily rack up $100 in video purchases a month or two. The hardware itself seems to have potential (though I'm no expert in this), but the interface is currently mediocre. I'm a returning the Fire TV and will order either Roku or Chromecast.
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on August 13, 2014
We've had the Fire at our cottage now for over a month. Got rid of cable and decided to stream only up here. Works great, took like 30 seconds to hook up and get it going, and easy enough that my 8 year old is probably better at using it than I am. It's lightning fast...no delay or buffering issues. No long load times. The voice search is incredibly accurate and very helpful...EXCEPT that it only searches Amazon content. So if what you want isn't in Amazon, you then need to go to the Neflix app and manually search by typing. It'd be awesome if the little remote had some kind of small keyboard on it so that typing in a title wasn't so tedious, but it's not a big deal.

As far as content goes, I have to say I'm a little disappointed by how many shows and movies are not available with my Prime membership. For the $99/year, I really thought most things would be free. Not so. Virtually every old TV show I search for, thinking my kids will enjoy (old school stuff like Alf, you know?), is NOT free with Prime. It's there...I can pay for it...but I feel I shouldn't have to with my paid membership. This really bugs me. Yesterday I searched for the 2001 movie Rat Race...again, it's there but I have to pay to rent it. Why? It's not some fancy new release. So I suppose these critical comments are more aimed at Prime membership and the content available with such, but I feel those buying a Fire TV are probably Amazon users and will likely also be considering (or already have) a Prime membership.

One thing that was not made clear (or at least I didn't see it anywhere) is that any show/movie that has the little Prime banner in the upper lefthand corner is free to watch with a Prime membership. When you click on it to open it, it can look like you're going to be charged for it because there's a price listed and nothing that actually says "Free with Prime." But that's how it works. I highly suggest that users set up a password requirement for any content that requires a fee (very easy to do) so that kids can't buy stuff by mistake, and so adults don't order something without a password prompt alerting you that you're about to purchase something.

Overall, happy with this purchase and will keep it. But I need to do some deciding as far as which subscriptions are worth the money and which aren't (possibly including Prime!).
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on August 14, 2014
Note- updated my review to reflect the accurate ram count and a fire TV alternative..

Its a great box with 2 major flaws.
1... Tho advertised as 8 gig of ram, the fire tv only ships with 5 available. And that 5 gigs of ram gets eaten up in a very quick way with just a couple of games (Gameloft games, for example). And until the USB port on the device gets opened up to allow for storage devices, it will remain very limited.
2... You must be connected to internet at ALL times to use the device. Even if games are offline games, it doesn't matter. You are greeted with a pop up that cannot be dismissed until you reconnect. So 4G hotspot users, take heed!

I kept this device regardless of these flaws for bedroom TV, but too limited for family room.
A great alternative is the MINIX Neo X8-H. I'll create a review for it soon in the proper place, but for now I'll state it ships with 16 gigs, 3 USB ports and an SDHC card slot.
And in one of those slots, rests a 500 GB external HD, that is is recognized by the android OS as a legitimate external drive. So I can have unlimited games for it, and doesn't require being online to use.
As of right now there is not a Google play store app for prime videos, but Amazon has recently been reported as saying one is "imminent "
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