The Amazon Fire TV Stick is a versatile streaming device that plugs right into your TV’s HDMI port. With its help, you can enjoy Netflix, Hulu and many other streaming apps on your big screen. Setting up this streaming device is super easy — just plug it in to your device and power, connect to the internet, and you’re done!
The Amazon Fire TV Stick (Firestick) looks like a USB flash drive, fits into your regular TV’s HDMI port and turns most TVs into ‘smart’ TVs for watching HD and 4K small screen shows from Hulu and Netflix on your ‘dumb’ box. Then link your other Amazon smart devices together without spending a whole new TV!
So close your laptop and power off your clunky desktop. Here’s everything you need to know about Firestick, including how to set it up, add personalized apps, and make sure you’re connected securely to prevent eavesdroppers from ruining your fun.
What can you do with the Amazon Fire Stick?
Amazon Firestick is a streaming device for bringing the content of streaming platforms to your TV. It also has a few extra functions for the best entertainment on the big screen.
This unit has a Bluetooth connected remote control with a built-in microphone. It’s Alexa’s voice remote that lets you control your TV and soundbar with your voice, search for shows, and launch them with voice commands. And you can command all of your Alexa-connected products just like you were talking to your Echo. You can connect Ring doorbells, Ecobee thermostats, Philips Hue lights, and other Alexa-enabled devices.
You can check the weather, play games (with a special widget), check your data consumption and choose a higher or lower viewing quality to manage data usage while binge-watching your favorite series.
The chart below shows Amazon Fire TV usage frequency, based on a survey conducted in 2018 in the US.
Some features of Amazon Firestick
You can access thousands of apps and channels like Netflix, Disney+, Hulu and BBC iPlayer. You can also access Spotify, Prime Video, YouTube, Pandora, etc. Remember you still need to subscribe to some channels without free access.
● If you don’t mind a few ads, you can watch over 200,000 movies and TV episodes for free from ad-supported streaming apps like PlutoTV, Freevee or Tubi.
● The Guide button makes it easy to see what’s available on live TV, news and sports. You may need to subscribe to channels like SLING TV or YouTube.
● Use the preset buttons to quickly get you to your favorite apps with just one click.
● Do you like loud sounds? Firestick supports Dolby Atmos sound on certain titles. Connect your home audio system and boom!
● No need to get up from the couch to check the weather or play a game: Alexa connectivity lets you control smart devices in your home.
Do you know: Fire TV is the most popular streaming device in Japan, Germany, India, USA and UK.
What is the difference between Firestick and Fire TV?
“Fire TV” is Amazon’s name for all of their streaming devices. There are four different versions of the Firestick, each with slightly different features and different price points. But remember, you can always find discounts and deals if you do a little research!
- This streaming device is the base model. It allows you to stream all your favorite apps in HD. Cost from $29
- It also streams in HD, but the remote that comes with it can’t be used to change the volume or turn your TV on and off. Cost from $39
- The Fire TV Stick 4K lets you stream in 4K resolution and offers Dolby Atmos. You will need a 4K capable TV and a proper sound system for this. Cost from $49
- The Fire Small Screen Stick 4K Max also streams in 4K, but it’s the best solution for avid gamers because it supports Wi-Fi 6. Prices from $59
Gamers may also be interested in Amazon’s Fire TV Cube. The Cube is a 4K streaming device that can connect to the internet using an ethernet cable. That makes it a great solution if you want to place your 4K display where the Wi-Fi signal isn’t strong enough.
How to set up Amazon Fire TV Stick
The Amazon Firestick setup process only takes a few minutes.
- Plug the Firestick into its power adapter. Next, plug the stick into the TV’s HDMI video input. Turn it on. Check that it is set up correctly for the HDMI input.
- Use the remote to start navigating through the on-screen welcome and setup instructions. If you don’t have one, use the TV’s remote control or the phone app to set up Wi-Fi.
- Go to Settings in the main menu >> Network >> Enter your Wi-Fi password. >> Connect. If your VPN offers an app for Amazon Fire, you can download it directly to your Firestick
- Next, sign in to your Amazon account. Then you just have to choose the right app and sign in to whatever streaming channel you use (like Netflix, Disney+, Hulu, etc.).
How to Add Apps to Your Amazon Firestick
One of the Firestick’s most versatile features is that it runs on the Android platform, opening up new opportunities for a personalized entertainment hub. Since Firestick comes with many pre-installed apps, you have to connect and activate each app. But the possibilities are endless.
Wondering how to jailbreak Firestick? Want to play your favorite game? You can transfer Android apps from your mobile device to your Fire TV Stick using the Apps2Fire app. You can also use Downloader or App Starter.
This will also work if your VPN has an Android app and not a dedicated Fire app. But the easiest way to connect via VPN is to install a VPN on your router and connect your streaming device to the same network. You can even get apps to turn your mobile phone into a keyboard.
If you want smart TV functionality without the cost, Amazon FireStick is for you. Stop streaming on your phone and computer and switch to TV. But one of its best features is that you can take it with you when you travel and plug it in for instant access to all your favorite videos.