Amazon TV

So media players aren't a new thing and they have their Benefits and Pitfalls. Some of those pitfalls include media types supported, functionality, convenience, ease of use and hardware that can make all of those things possible.Amazon Fire TV   adresses many of these issues and provides a viable solution.

 The Good:

  • Simple Setup 
  • Cheap
  • Amazon Fire TV works like a charm with Amazon Instant movies and TV yet, and Prime subscribers can stream thousands of titles for no additional charge. 
  • Voice-search feature is cool and works well. 
  • Quad-core makes the interface extremely responsive, and quick stream of 1080p video (which several other media players can't make valid claims of). 
  • Supports third-party apps include Netflix, YouTube, Hulu Plus, Watch ESPN, and Pandora, and hundreds of games. 
  • Full Dolby Digital Support
  • Optical Out

 The Bad:

  • The user interface strongly favors Amazon Instant content over other services, and the voice-search feature doesn't comb through Netflix or most other non-Amazon apps. 
  • Some major apps are missing, including HBO Go and Spotify. 
  • You really need the $40 Fire Game Controller to get the most out of the box.
  • Amazon Fire TV Game Controller

Here's a little comparison that shows how it stacks up to the competitors.

End of the day?  This device does what it claims to and its a solid piece of hardware.

It supports all the streaming media sources that its competitors do except HBO GO but it has additional benefits I found nice.  The Dolby Digital Plus is definitely a feature other devices like Roku and Apple TV do not support.  The optical out that those devices dont have is also handy for those in a pinch who don't have an HDMI supported stereo receiver.  The quad-core doesn't hurt either when you're streaming 1080p video :)

If you're looking for a simple setup that supports a wide variety of media?   This may be the perfect option.