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Fire TV Stick

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Amazon adds Single-Sign-On feature to Fire TV devices in latest update

Signing into apps on your phone is annoying enough, but doing it on a TV is far worse. Amazon is rolling out a new feature in the latest Fire TV update called Single-Sign-On. As the name implies, once you've signed into a participating TV provider's app, you're automatically signed into all of them.

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Android TV streaming boxes: An uneasy start and apparent death

Android TV is very much alive, as was made abundantly clear by the plethora of new Android TV powered televisions with Google Assistant capability shown off at CES 2018. Streaming boxes powered by Android TV, however, are conspicuously missing—the last Android TV set-top box to be released in the United States was the Xiaomi Mi Box in October 2016.

Apple TV and Amazon's Fire TV products both received hardware refreshes last September, while Roku products received hardware refreshes in October. In comparison, the three year old Nexus Player—arguably the flagship of Android TV—last received a software update in November, and will not be upgraded to Android 8.1 Oreo.

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Firefox comes to the Amazon Fire TV for browsing, and YouTube obviously

When one door closes, another opens. For Amazon, this couldn't be anymore true. With Google pulling its YouTube app from the Fire TV and Echo Show, Amazon users were left with few options to watch their favorite channels and discover new videos. Now that's changing with the release of Firefox on Fire TV.

The browser is available for 2nd gen and newer Fire TVs and Fire TV Sticks, and although it's aimed at US customers, it's accessible to everyone. It's not the full-fledged Firefox experience, though, so don't expect a home page, bookmark sync, extensions, or any of those fancy features you use on the desktop.

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[Update: Amazon responds] Google pulling YouTube from Echo Show and Fire TV after failed talks with Amazon

Google and Amazon haven't played well over the years. Back in 2015, Amazon pulled the Chromecast and Nexus Player (among other similar devices) from its online store to boost sales of its own Fire TV products. Earlier this year, Google blocked YouTube from working on the Echo Show, and later partially restored the functionality after talks with Amazon. Meanwhile, Amazon Prime Video still isn't compatible with the Chromecast or most Android TV devices.

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Amazon releases Fire TV Stick Basic Edition for $50

If your TV is tragically not smart enough—or otherwise lacks a way to play Amazon Prime Video—Amazon has been heavily pushing their line of Fire TV devices since 2014. While the 3rd generation Fire TV started shipping last month, Amazon just announced the new Fire TV Stick Basic Edition. Problem is, there's absolutely nothing new about this at all.

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Black Friday Target ad reveals $80 Google Home, $30 Home Mini with $10 giftcard, $30 Fire 7 tablet, and more

Thanksgiving is coming up this month in the United States, which means retailers are prepping for Black Friday. Just about every major store will have steep discounts on items, but whether they are worth fighting crowds for is another question. Target's ad for Black Friday was recently released, and there are a few noteworthy deals for Google, Amazon, and Samsung products.

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[Deal Alert] Amazon is offering discounted bundles, such as the all-new 4K Fire TV and Echo Dot for $79.99 ($40 off)

Amazon has been busy announcing its latest hardware lineup this week, including a range of brand new Echo devices and a 4K Fire TV dongle. You may think you'd have to wait a while to see any of the new products discounted, but it's already the case for the new Fire TV. The high-definition TV dongle can be bought with either the HD Antenna or an Echo Dot with a healthy saving, and there's also a deal involving the original Fire TV Stick.

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Amazon Fire TV's OS 5.2.6 lets you use voice dictation when the keyboard is open

Back in 2010, Android 2.1 Eclair added voice dictation when the keyboard is open to let you use speech instead of hunting and pecking on your 3" display to type a few letters and characters. That function apparently never made it into Amazon's Fire OS Android fork on TVs (it's available on Fire tablets as far as I can tell). But that's changing now that Amazon is all about voice.

Fire OS 5.2.6 has been rolling to TV devices since September 13, but the official changelog was just posted and Amazon and says you can hold the voice button on the Alexa Voice Remote or the Fire TV Remote App (on your phone) when the keyboard is open to dictate text instead of typing one letter at a time.

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Amazon's two 2017 Fire TV models are a mid-range dongle and a cube-shaped flagship box

Two of Amazon's 2017 additions to its popular Fire TV lineup have been leaked courtesy of AFTVnews: a mid-range dongle and a flagship set-top box. Both will be capable of 4K60, and the cube-shaped one is notable because it reportedly has new built-in hardware that allow it to act as an Amazon Echo Dot when you want it to.

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[Update: It's really live now] Alexa devices can now control your Fire TV

One of the Google Home's best features is the ability to control playback of a Chromecast with voice commands. For example, you can ask "OK Google, play Gravity Falls on the living room TV" to start playing content without having another device nearby. Now the Fire TV can do that, but with Alexa devices.

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