Amazon Announces the Fire TV Set-Top Box for $99
The rumors and speculation surrounding Amazon and their set-top box are finally coming true today as Amazon announces the Fire TV. I am certainly glad it didn’t turn out to be called the FireTube as a patent file suggested.
The $99 black box offers a bang for the buck it sounds like. It measures in at 4.5 x 4.5 x 0.7 inches and weighs 9.9 ounces. On the rear you find a power port, HDMI out, Optical Audio, Ethernet and USB. Internally you get a Qualcomm Krait 300 quad-core processor at 1.7Ghz paired with a Qualcomm Adreno 320 GPU. You also have 2GB of LPDDR2 RAM and 8GB of internal storage.
On the connection side of things it offers up Dual-Band, Dual- Antenna Wi-Fi and supports 802.11a/b/g/n. It also offers up Bluetooth 4.0 connection with HID, HFP 1.6 and SPP profiles.
The homescreen is fairly reminiscent of the Kindle Fire look. The Fire TV comes loaded with a number of apps like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Instant.
“Tiny box, huge specs, tons of content, incredible price—people are going to love Fire TV,” said Jeff Bezos, Amazon.com Founder and CEO. “Voice search that actually works means no more typing on an alphabet grid. Our exclusive new ASAP feature predicts the shows you’ll want to watch and gets them ready to stream instantly. And our open approach gives you not just Amazon Instant Video and Prime Instant Video, but also Netflix, Hulu Plus, and more. On Fire TV you can watch Alpha House and House of Cards.”
To top things off, the Fire TV also plays nicely with your Kindle tablet allowing you mirror/cast content from it to the Fire TV box. Not to mention the added option of a gaming controller. Amazon says there will be over 1,000 free titles to get your hand on to play with the Amazon Fire Game Controller (which is $39.99), but they are also going to give you 1,000 Amazon coins to encourage you to buy some too. All the games have been tweaked specifically to be played with the controller through the Fire TV. I think the biggest struggle that will offer end users is the small 8GB of storage, which I can only assume is smaller due to the OS.