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Amazon Introduces New Fire TV Stick 4K, Alexa Voice Remote

Turns out Amazon wasn’t done with its fall device announcements: Two weeks after introducing a number of new Echo speakers and accessories as well as a new DVR, the company announced a new 4K Fire TV stick as well as a new Alexa voice remote Wednesday.

The new Fire TV Stick 4K supports Dolby Vision and HDR10+ UHD video streaming, thanks to a quad-core 1.7GHz processor, and includes a 802.11ac Wi-Fi chip for optimal wireless connectivity. The device can be pre-ordered effective immediately for$49.99, and will ship in the U.S. and Canada at the end of the month.

In addition to new chipsets, the Fire TV Stick 4K also comes with a new remote control, which Amazon calls the Alexa Voice Remote. The remote combines Bluetooth with infrared to control both the Fire TV Stick as well as other home entertainment devices, including your TV and cable box.

To work with the latter, Amazon has added a volume rocker, a mute button and a power button. The company will also include the new remote with the Fire TV Cube, and it is backward-compatible with existing Fire TV streaming devices. Amazon will sell it separately for $29.99, and also begin shipping to consumers on October 31.

Amazon’s new Fire TV Stick 4K is effectively replacing the company’s Fire TV with 4K Ultra HD, which the company introduced last year. “We have sold through the earlier Fire TV 4K edition inventory and we do not plan to replenish supply at this time,” a spokesperson told Variety Tuesday.

This also means that much like Roku, Amazon is moving to a smaller form factor, and away from traditional streaming boxes, for most of its line-up. “We’ve listened to our customers and pushed to deliver the complete 4K solution they are looking for, all within a compact stick form factor,” said Amazon fire TV vice president Marc Whitten.

In addition to introducing both the new stick and the new Alexa Voice remote, Amazon also revealed a new milestone Wednesday: The company said that Fire TV devices and Fire TV edition TV sets are now being used by 25 million people worldwide every month. That’s slightly above Roku’s most recent numbers. The streaming device maker revealed in August that it ended Q2 of 2018 with 22 million active accounts.

Amazon is now looking to expand the Fire TV ecosystem by giving users access to broadcast TV in addition to streaming apps. The company announced a new DVR dubbed the Fire TV Recast at the end of last month.

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