-0.2 C
Munich

Amazon Fire TV Stick (2022) review

Popular Posts

The Amazon Fire TV Stick 2020 (2020) is still a great option if you are looking for a reliable and affordable streaming solution for your HD TV. Even though it lacks 4K functionality, this streaming stick has a good interface and great app support.

HDR support is available, along with a 60fps framerate, which allows for smoother and more richer images, provided that your TV supports the same specifications.

 

The Amazon Fire TV Stick 2020 won’t provide native 4K resolution. You’ll need the Fire TV Stick4K to do that. However, if you own a HD TV this smart mid-price purchase won’t be as expensive as Ultra HD models but will still offer older TVs some smart TV features.

It is difficult to judge the Fire TV Stick 2020 – or buy the right one – because Amazon has since introduced a new entry-level model called the Fire TV Stick.

 

The Lite has some significant differences from the one we are reviewing. These include volume controls and a mute switch on the step-up model. You can also connect to and control other AV equipment. It’ll work better if your home theatre system includes more than a TV and streamer.

 

Although they may not seem very important, the volume controls make a big difference. It is hard to switch back to the Lite model’s remote. This means we have to use a separate remote to adjust volume and increase/ decrease audio. The Fire TV Stick (2020), which features voice navigation and regular updates that simplify and improve the interface, is far more user-friendly.

It is less forgivable that Amazon-owned and Amazon-affiliated content are prominently featured on every menu. However, if you have a Prime subscription, this will not be a problem.

Let’s get to the point

  • What’s it? The most recent HD streaming stick from the Amazon Fire TV range
  • Where can I find it? It is out now
  • What does it cost? $39.99/PS39.99/AU$79

Amazon Fire TV Stick (2020).

The Amazon Fire TV Stick 2020 is now available. It is available for purchase at $39.99 and PS39.99 in the US, UK respectively – the exact same price as the FireTV Stick – or AU$79 in Australia now that the model has been made available in the region.

Fire TV Stick (2020) design

You’ll find an assortment of accessories in the well-packaged box. The Fire TV Stick (2020 streamer) is included, along with a small but flexible extension cable that can be used to fit the stick in tight spaces behind a TV.

Two AAA Amazon Basics batteries will be included for the Alexa voice remote. A charger will also be provided to charge the streamer (via micro USB).

The streaming stick is a simple black slab measuring 86x30x13mm. It plugs into a TV using HDMI 2.0.

The design is almost identical to the Fire TV Stick Lite and Fire TV Stick 4K. It may be difficult to distinguish the differences if you have multiple devices, as we did during our review. The Amazon logo is subtle, but not overpowering. The sleek black design and curved remote give it a premium feel, despite its low price.

The difference isn’t in the streamer but rather the remote.

Each Fire TV device comes with an Alexa voice remote. All models support voice functionality, as well as basic inputs like return, home and menu. The Fire TV Stick 2020 adds volume controls to increase or decrease adio-evels and a mute button to turn off the sound completely.

The Fire TV Stick (2020 remote) has volume controls that are located below all other buttons. (Image credit to TechRadar).

Performance and features

What’s new in the 2020 Amazon Fire TV Stick model? The 2020 model of the Amazon Fire TV Stick is still Full HD streaming. It also comes with the Fire TV Stick 4K as well as the Fire TV Cube. This clicker can control connected AV receivers or soundbars.

Although it was launched in 2019, there are some notable improvements over the HD Fire TV Stick.

One is the introduction of HDR (high-dynamic range). This means that you will get more color and contrast in your HD photos, as well as a wider range of light and dark colors. The basic HDR10 format is available here. However, you won’t find the dynamic HDR10+ which uses metadata to calibrate shot-by-shot picture settings.

You won’t see the full HDR effect without 4K Resolution because there are less pixels. The 4K TV will upscale the video output to output 4K pixels on the screen. However, you’ll still be subject to the set’s processing capabilities.

Amazon Fire TV Stick 2020 plugs into an HDMI port. Image credit: Amazon

The 2019 model was capable of playing back 30fps, but the 2020 model can play 60fps. This is fitting considering that many 4K TVs now have a 60fps panel (or even 120fps). Smoother motion should result in less blurring and judder when moving fast, but this is largely due to the television’s processing. This should be particularly useful for gaming on Fire TV Stick or the Amazon Luna streaming service.

Amazon claims that the new model is 50% more powerful than the 2019 version, due to its quad-core processor at 1.7 GHz. The dual-band, dual antenna WiFi supports 5GHz networks for better streaming and fewer dropped connections. It also consumes 50% less power.

The Fire TV Stick 2020 supports Dolby Audio surround sound. This means that immersive audio can be achieved, but you’ll need speakers that support it.

App menus and Alexa pop up windows happily coexist onscreen. (Image credit: TechRadar)

Setup and UI for Fire TV Stick 2020

Fire TV Stick 2020 makes use of the Fire TV Interface. If you have ever used a Fire TV streamer or Fire TV-based smart TV, you will be familiar with what is available.

Horizontal navigation is possible with several content rows, including your Recent apps and Your Apps & Channels. Prime Originals & Exclusives are also available.

It is quite comprehensive, including streaming apps like Amazon Prime Video, Netflix and Disney Plus.

Amazon Prime Video isn’t aggressively hiding its main competitors. However, Amazon does ensure that its content is prioritized. The Fire TV interface is often clogged with Amazon Prime Video content, whether it’s content from the platform directly or associated TV channels like StarzPlay.

It is common for you to click on an intriguing title and find that you need to subscribe. This can make it frustrating to see the signposting around the content before you actually click through to view it. You won’t be able to cancel your subscription after you have selected a TV or film. Instead, you will need to use the voice remote’s back button.

The majority of content panes have a sponsored section for Audible. This is Amazon’s audiobook subscription service. It’s a shame to pay for hardware and then see ads. However, the Tizen OS on Samsung TVs does this too, though it is less visible.

The UI and suggested content will be most enjoyable if you are a Prime subscriber. However, other streaming platforms like Roku may be less inclined to funnel you towards specific purchases.

The Amazon account that is registered on the device cannot access the Prime Video app. The problem will be fixed when Amazon launches user profiles in 2020. However, it is a frustrating issue – especially if you have multiple streaming subscriptions with your cohabitants.

Changes are coming, such as the recent redesign of Alexa integration. This apes the UI of Echo Show smart display range, when accessing information via Amazon’s voice assistant. A picture-in-picture mode will soon be available on Fire TV. This means you can load multiple apps at once on your Fire TV interface.

Even though Amazon-affiliated content can be a little overbearing, it’s not a bad interface. The Home / Your Videos tabs are almost identical.

Do I need to buy the Amazon Fire TV Stick 2020?

It’s a good deal if…

App support for your smart TV is not great

The Fire TV platform can be a great addition to any TV that is still on a dumb model or has missing apps.

Voice commands that are hands-free and not requiring any typing

Even though Alexa can’t handle all your requests, it is quite useful. It’s great for simple commands and navigating the OS.

Are you an Amazon Prime subscriber

Amazon is determined to showcase Amazon Prime movies and other content on its Fire TV platform. This will also include associated Prime channels. If you have already purchased into the Amazon ecosystem, you will see more content that you are interested in.

It’s not worth the risk if…

Want 4K HDR playback

This price means you’ll have to give up 4K resolution. A 4K streamer might be better for high-quality sources.

The cheapest streaming stick is what you want

You can also find cheaper streamers like Amazon’s Fire TV Stick Lite for $29.99 / PS29.99 / AU$59.99 – but you will lose volume controls and Atmos compatibility.

You are not an Amazon Prime subscriber

Amazon will try to sell you its content wherever it can. If you aren’t part of the ecosystem, it can be annoying.

- Advertisement -spot_img

More articles

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisement -spot_img

Recent Posts