Amazon sells many different Fire TV streaming devices, from stick-shaped players to the large Fire TV Cube, and many smart TVs have the same software. Today, Amazon revealed the third-generation Fire TV Cube as its best streaming player to date.
Just like the previous model, the Fire TV Cube is a media streaming box and an Alexa-powered smart speaker in one device. The Fire TV OS software includes access to most popular streaming services, as well as some games — the company has been heavily promoting its Luna game streaming service. The Fire TV Cube can listen for voice commands, and if the TV is off, it can broadcast a response through the built-in speaker.
The new Fire TV Cube drops the Borg Cube-like plastic shell, in favor of a black felt material that mirrors Amazon’s Echo speakers. Most of the improvements are under the hood, though. It’s 20% faster than the previous model, and supports 4K, Dolby Vision, HDR, and Dolby Atmos audio. Amazon also added Wi-Fi 6E support, which should help with streaming… as long as you also have a Wi-Fi 6E router.
There’s also an input HDMI for the first time, in addition to the regular TV output, which is mostly intended for use with a cable box. Amazon says you can use voice commands like, “Alexa, tune to ESPN on cable.” Integration with over-the-air TV was a selling point for earlier Fire TV Cube models — you could buy a Fire TV Recast box, connect it to an antenna, and watch local stations from any Fire TV. However, that device was discontinued earlier this year, and there’s no replacement in sight.
You can pre-order the new Fire TV Cube starting today for $139.99. That’s a slight price increase from the previous model, which started at $119.99. Thankfully, sales on Fire and Echo products are frequent, such as next month’s big sale event.