OK, maybe we’re being a little unfair. For example, if Netflix is the only video on-demand service that you’re subscribed to – and it’s all you ever watch on your Fire TV, this could be a legitimate upgrade for you. Being able to instantaneously jump back into the app with a single tap is handy.
However, Amazon recently overhauled its Fire TV software from the ground-up with a focus on better recommendations for viewers. Amazon tracks what shows you’re watching and will suggest similar boxsets or movies based on your tastes. And these suggestions are tailored to the streaming services you’re already using – you won’t find constant suggestions only available in pricey new subscription services you have no intention of paying for.
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If the third-generation Alexa Voice Remote had customisable shortcut buttons that might be different, as you could pre-programme them based on your viewing habits and the streaming service you’re paying for and able to watch. As it stands, this new design makes the previously minimalist and sleek Fire TV remote start to look a little like an advert for all the movie streaming Direct Debits you haven’t committed to yet.
The new remote design is coming soon in the United States, with no word on when (or whether!) it will make the journey across the pond.