Amazon launches Fire TV, the Android-based streaming box

Amazon Fire TV 1

A new $99 box from Amazon that connects to your TV and internet connection via dual-band Wi-Fi.

Amazon’s Fire TV was unveiled yesterday, and we’re here to take a little look at what this tiny black box can do.

Using a tiny microphone built in to the remote, you can voice search through tons of content, with apps for Amazon Instant Video, Netflix, Youtube, and more, plus there’s Twitch support coming soon.

It outputs at 1080p straight to your HDTV, with Dolby Digital Plus 5.1 surround sound, with HDMI and optical audio-out for up to 7.1 surround sound.

Amazon Fire TV Home Screen AngleGame of Thrones = Win

There’s the introduction of Amazon’s new ‘ASAP ‘ (Advanced Streaming and Prediction) feature, which predicts what movies and TV episodes you’d like to watch based on your previous viewing habits, it then pre-buffers them for you, so when you hit play they begin instantly.

The box is tiny, sizing up at 115mm x 115mm x 17.5mm, but packs a fair amount of punch with its quad-core 1.7 Ghz processor and 2GB of RAM. It’s inbuilt Adreno 320 graphics engine is said to give ‘lightning fast graphics and excellent fluidity’ too.

Amazon has worked with games developers too, such as EA, Disney, Gameloft, Telltale, and more, to bring top android-based games to Fire TV. The Walking Dead, NBA2K14, Minecraft, and Asphalt 8 are available right now, with ‘thousands of additional games coming next month.’

Sev Zero, a Sanctum-esque tower-defense game, which has been built exclusively for Fire TV by Amazon Game Studios, is available for free when you purchase the Fire game controller. Take a look at the trailer for the game below.

The Fire game controller doesn’t look like anything too special, but it could be a welcome change to the usual touch-screen controls on Android devices, which are a little clumsy when it comes to racing games and shooters.

Whilst we won’t be seeing the Fire TV taking over the big guns in the games console stakes, it still looks like a nice little all-rounder for home entertainment.

Amazon Fire Game ControllerHmm, nothing really new here.

You can take a look at the full range of features and specs for the device over on Amazon.com’s website. And for the Fire game controller head over here. Unfortunately there is no word on when Fire TV will be available in the UK, but we’ll keep our eyes open for any updates.

Does Fire TV look like something you would buy? Is the gaming feature appealing? Let us know in the comments below.

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