The Amazon Fire TV Stick is a popular choice for streaming content over the internet, on par with Roku, Apple TV, Chromecastand other platforms. Plus, you can download apps for it and even use its built-in Alexa functionality to control your smart home devices.
It’s a solid choice for those looking to stream on Netflix or Hulu, but it’s also a great option if you’re interested in game streaming and want to try out Amazon Luna. The Fire TV Stick includes support for Amazon’s platform and makes it easy to set up and get started.
How to set up Amazon Fire TV Stick
The Amazon Fire TV Stick includes the Fire Stick remote, the Fire Stick itself, the power adapter, and the micro USB cord.
All of these will be used during setup, so make sure you not only have a free power outlet, but that you’re close enough to your TV that the USB cord is accessible.
- Connect the Fire TV stick to a power source, then plug the stick into the TV’s HDMI port. If necessary, use the included HDMI extension cable. If necessary, switch your TV to the correct HDMI input.
- Insert the battery into the back of the included Alexa Voice Control. For reference, it uses two AAA batteries.
- On-screen instructions will appear to guide you through the next steps. First, choose your language.
- If your remote does not pair automatically, press and hold Home until the “press play to start” button appears.
- Select your Wi-Fi network and enter your password.
- You will then have to register your Fire TV Stick. If you buy it from Amazon, it will be pre-registered for you. Option Have an account or New to Amazon? Create an account.
- If you already have an account, a code will appear on the screen. Go to Amazon.com/code and enter the activation code when prompted. If you don’t have an account yet, follow the steps to create a new account.
- Option Continue.
- You will be prompted to store the password on your Amazon account. If you plan to buy other Amazon devices, storing your network passwords can save time during setup.
- Choose whether to enable parental controls.
- You can also use some Fire TV remotes to control the TV’s volume. The next step will help you determine if it is working correctly. Turn up the volume on your TV and select Continue.
- Check the volume up and down buttons. If they respond as expected, select Right.
- Option ALRIGHT.
Then your Fire TV Stick will be set up. If an update is available, it will be applied automatically; if this does not happen, you may need to update your Fire Stick manually.
You’ll be asked if you want to subscribe to Amazon Kids+, and you can choose to subscribe or not. If you’re not an Amazon Prime subscriber yet, it may prompt you to sign up.
How to use Amazon Fire Stick
You can control the Fire TV Stick in two main ways: by voice or by the remote control itself. The home screen defaults to Prime TV content, but you can also continue watching without navigating to another app.
Voice control is very simple. You have to press the Alexa button on the remote itself and then ask Alexa to perform a command. A few examples are:
“Alexa, find 4K content.”
“Alexa, rewind a minute.”
“Alexa, how’s the weather?”
You can ask Alexa to open any app, pause, play, rewind, and fast forward content. Of course, all the usual Alexa features are still accessible through the Fire TV Stick; you can ask for nearby places to eat, a news summary and more. You can also play voice games with Alexa, like Jeopardy, as long as they’re enabled in the Alexa app.
Almost all streaming platforms can be accessed through the Fire Stick, including your favorites like Netflix and Hulu, Funimation, CNN+, etc. Another benefit is that you can stream Direct Alexa-compatible smart security cameras to your TV via the Fire TV Stick.
The remote includes shortcut buttons for accessing Prime Video, Netflix, Disney+, and Hulu. However, you can browse a full app store full of options.
- Select the icon next to the gear (or settings) icon and select App Store.
- This will open a menu of all available apps that you can download. While most are free, there are some premium apps that you will have to pay to use. Select the application you want.
- Once selected, select Pick to download the app. Then it will appear in My Apps part of your Fire Stick.
If you’re having trouble finding the app you want, just ask Alexa to find it. For example, if you can’t find Crunchyroll using a traditional search, just say, “Alexa, open Crunchyroll.” This will take you to the app download page.
To use voice commands, you must press and hold the Alexa Voice button on the remote. If you just press it once, it brings up a menu showing the different ways you can use Alexa on your Fire Stick—a useful feature for first-time users.
For Amazon Streaming, choose Fire Stick
There are different types of Fire Sticks, but the best choice is the Fire TV Stick 4K. It provides access to the highest quality streams, but if you don’t care about 4K content (or you’re trying to conserve bandwidth), the cheaper 1080p option will still deliver the same content, only at lower resolution.