Amazon turns Fire TVs into smart screens for the home
Amazon turns Fire TVs into smart screens for the home

Amazon has started rolling out new features and functionality for the recently announced Fire TV streaming devices, Fire TV Omni and Series 4.

There's also a smart home control panel, similar to those available on the company's Fire Tablet and Echo Show smart displays.

Available in the US and Canada, dashboards provide quick access, on/off switches for smart lights, and Alexa-connected ports and switches.

Smart cameras have their own row on the dashboard. Previously, you could use voice commands to control smart home gadgets using the Alexa Voice Remote on Fire TV. But there are now physical screen interfaces for these things.

Samsung introduces the TV Control Panel for the SmartThings platform. Apple TV also has a similar panel via Control Center.

Amazon has announced that it will add additional features like smart home kits and smart thermostats to the dashboard over the next year.

When it comes to Alexa, Amazon has also added what is known as the Alexa Shortcut Panel, which appears on the screen when you press the Alexa button on the remote control.

Guides you to control your smart home, weather, news and video library. The company said the feature is rolling out to Fire TV devices in the US.

Amazon is also working to improve the audio aspect of the Fire TV experience. The company is expanding the ability to use Echo speakers (such as the Echo Studio) as soundbars and introducing this feature to the new Fire TV Stick 4K Max, Fire TV Omni, and 4 Series.

Amazon introduces a smart home control panel

On all TVs, Alexa Home Theater supports audio from streaming media apps and connected devices. However, the same applies to the Fire TV Stick 4K Max, provided it is connected to the TV's eARC port.

Audio from other inputs will be routed through Alexa's home theater settings. This is something other Fire TV devices cannot.

After promising AirPlay 2 support over Fire TV Omni and Series 4, the company is preparing to release this feature soon. Amazon has once again confirmed that Zoom is switching to Fire TV Omni TV.

Owners of first Amazon brand TVs can connect the camera to a USB port for video conferencing. In the coming weeks, you'll be able to attend Zoom meetings on the largest screen in your home.

According to Amazon, Fire TV owners can expect all of these new features to hit the market in the coming weeks.

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