Amazon's latest update brings AirPlay 2 and HomeKit to its Omni and 4-Series Fire TVs, a home dashboard to Fire TV devices, HDMI eARC-based wireless audio capabilities to Stick 4K Max, and more.
Fire TV updatesFire TV Stick 4K Max now lets you beam TV sound, and sound from your TV's connected HDMI devices like consoles, wirelessly to Amazon Echo speakers and a sub. It works by connecting Stick 4K Max to your TV'ets HDMI eARC port and setting the TV to output all audio via HDMI eARC. This type of HDMI eARC functionality in media players first came to Apple TV 4K 2021 (where it is also limited to Apple's own HomePod speakers) and later to Amazon's Omni and 4-series Fire TVs. The new update enables Fire TV Stick 4K Max to do the same. Compatible speakers are: Amazon Echo (3rd and 4th Gen), Echo Plus (2nd Gen), Echo Dot (4th Gen), Echo Studio, and Echo Sub. Check the table below for set-up instructions.
Beam all TV audio, including from HDMI inputs, wirelessly to Echo speakers with Fire TV Stick 4K MaxIn the US and Canada, there is a new 'Smart Home Dashboard' for Fire TV devices that lets you control smart lights, cameras, plugs, switches, and more. There is also a new Alexa shortcut panel. Amazon said that "early next year, support for smart home Groups and Thermostats will be added". In addition, the update adds Apple AirPlay 2 and HomeKit support on the Omni and 4-Series Fire TVs, as first announced earlier this year. AirPlay lets you share content from an iOS or Mac devices wirelessly onto the screen, while Siri can power on/off the TV or change volume. The update is rolling out gradually over the coming weeks. Fire TV Stick 4K Max is currently available for $35.- Source: Amazon via Cord Cutters News
Amazon Fire TV update – changelog
All-new Smart Home Dashboard: Now you can view and control connected devices throughout your home. Just say, “Alexa, show me my smart home dashboard” and Fire TV will display any smart lights, plugs, and switches you’ve connected, which you can check the state of (on/off) and control with the remote. A new row is specifically dedicated to smart cameras as well, which you can view feeds of. You can also check smart devices you’ve favorited from the Alexa companion app. Early next year, support for smart home Groups and Thermostats will be added. Alexa Shortcut Panel: With the remote, a simple press of the Alexa button will now slide out a shortcut panel at the bottom of the screen for quick access to smart home controls, weather, news, and your video library. Alexa Shortcut Panel will be available broadly on Fire TV devices in the United States. Alexa Home Theater for Fire TV Omni Series, Fire TV 4-Series, and 4K Fire TV Stick 4K Max: Wirelessly connect Echo speakers like Echo Studio for Dolby Atmos audio or other Echo smart speakers for immersive sound. With Fire TV Omni Series and 4-Series televisions, audio will output when streaming on Fire TV and across any compatible device that’s connected, including cable boxes, gaming consoles, and antenna sources. Fire TV Stick 4K Max can now do the same, so long as it’s plugged into your TV’s HDMI eARC port, which means you can broadcast audio to Echo speakers, even when you’re enjoying content on inputs other than Fire TV. Set-up instructions are here. Set-up: 1. Open the Alexa app 2. Open Devices 3. Select Plus and scroll to the bottom of the screen 4. Select Combine speakers 5. Select Home Theater 6. Select your compatible Fire TV device 7. Select up to two compatible Echo devices to use as speakers, along with an optional Echo Sub 8. Select left and right speakers when using two Echo devices 9. Name your home theater and assign it to a room in your house 10. Devices in your speaker group should be in the same room as your television 11. Follow the directions on your TV to finish set up Airplay 2 and HomeKit on Fire TV Omni Series and 4-Series TVs: Fire TV Omni Series and 4-Series users can stream, share, and control content from iPhone, iPad and Mac right to their Fire TV, including videos, photos, music or podcasts. HomeKit lets you use Siri for TV controls like turning power on/off or changing volume. Zoom Video Communications for Fire TV Omni Series (Coming Soon): In the coming weeks, you will be able to place and receive Zoom Meetings from the biggest screen in your home. After downloading the Zoom app through Fire TV, simply plug a compatible 720p-1080p webcam into the USB port and say, “Alexa, find Zoom.” Once everything is set up, join a meeting using your remote, or simply say, “Alexa, join my Zoom meeting.”
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