Now Alexa can change the channel for you, too
Amazon has announced Alexa features for Fire TV that allow users to control their viewing experience with their voices.
In other words, US consumers will be able to pair any Fire TV with any Echo device and tap into voice control, asking Alexa to start a show, help find a good movie and control playback like play, pause and fast forward.
Alexa can now function as a remote control.
For consumers with only one Fire TV, the Echo device will pair as soon as they ask Alexa a question that includes "Fire TV," like, “Alexa, watch The Grand Tour on Fire TV,” or, “Alexa, show me comedies on Fire TV.”
Customers with more than one Fire TV will have to use the Alexa app to pair their devices.
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Users can also pair their Echo devices with their Fire TV Edition smart TVs and control TV settings like volume and input switching. According to Amazon, when connected to an HD antenna, users can also change the channel, pause and resume over-the-air live TV playback and launch the on-screen channel guide with voice commands, including:
- “Alexa, turn on Fire TV”
- “Alexa, tune to Fox”
- “Alexa, tune to NBC”
- “Alexa, switch to HDMI one”
- “Alexa, mute the volume on Fire TV”
Far-field control of Fire TV is available today (August 1) for customers in the US on all generations of Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. Amazon said US customers with the new Fire TV Edition smart TVs will have far-field control within the coming week. Smart home camera support is “coming soon” on all Fire TVs and second generation Fire TV Sticks in the US.
“Alexa is built in the cloud and always getting smarter and these new Fire TV features are the latest way that Alexa is making it simple for you to enjoy and control your living room entertainment,” said Marc Whitten, vice president of Amazon Fire TV, in a statement. “Simply ask Alexa to play your favorite show or keep an eye on your kids’ playroom during movie night, right from the comfort of your couch. This is just the beginning and we’ll continue to create new ways to simplify the way you interact with your TV — we can’t wait to see what customers think.”
In addition, Amazon said consumers will soon be able to view live video feeds from supported smart home cameras from their Fire TVs.