Information courtesy of The Mirror
Amazon’s newest streaming gadget goes on sale today – but there’s an update in store for older versions.
Amazon’s Fire TV Stick has been a smash hit and given thousands of people a cheap way of turning their telly into a smart TV.
After revealing a new version that includes the Alexa voice assistant and a specially modified remote control, Amazon is going one step further.
The company is issuing a software update that’ll make all Fire TV Sticks – including the first and second generation – compatible with the Alexa assistant.
It means you can use the voice controlled technology to search for your favourite shows or get it to fast-forward and rewind in case you missed something.
The new software upgrades every existing Fire TV Voice Remote to an Alexa Voice Remote. Those without a voice remote can use the Fire TV app for iOS and Android on their smartphones to access Alexa in the same way.
The same software update also upgrades previous generation Fire TV and Fire TV Stick devices to the new, cinematic UI.
“Not only are we shipping a new Fire TV Stick – a faster and more powerful successor to our fastest-selling UK device ever – we’re also rolling Alexa out to every single Fire TV device in the UK,” said Jorrit Van der Meulen, vice president of Amazon Devices International.
The timing is no coincidence. Today is the day that Google’s much-hyped Home smart speaker goes on sale in the UK.
Many tech experts see voice search as the next big interface that we’ll use to control our gadgets. And the big companies are scrambling to establish their brands.
Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri lead the way, closely followed by the newly-released Google Assistant and Microsoft’s Cortana. Cortana now comes bundled in with every Windows 10 PC.
“This will allow millions more customers to access Alexa, meaning they can get answers to questions, use Alexa skills, manage their smart home, or even find things to watch and control playback, just by asking.”