Today AFTVNews confirmed in an exclusive article that the releases will consist of a mid-tier model and a new flagship model, and both will be capable of 4K HDR video at 60 fps. For consumers unfamiliar with the terminology, that means increased sharpness and clarity and more lush, vivid colors. However, there will be quite a few differences between the two devices.
The new mid-range model will be a compact device similar to the Google Chromecast, with a permanently attached HDMI cable and a micro USB port for attaching a power cord. In a leaked benchmark, it was also discovered that the device will have a 1.5 GHz quad core CPU and 2 GB of RAM, and it is speculated that it will also feature the same 8 GB of internal storage as the Fire TV models that have come before it. This makes it a bit more powerful than the most recent Amazon Fire TV Stick, but still less powerful than the current Amazon Fire TV.
The new flagship model is even more exciting: according to AFTVNews, "it essentially combines the functionality of a Fire TV, an Echo Dot, and an IR emitter, like the Harmony Hub, into a single device." Sure, Amazon has already made it possible to control the current line of Fire TV models using an external Alexa-enabled device (like the Echo Dot), but this one will have Alexa built right in - blue LED light bar, mute button, far-field microphones and all - so no additional external device will be necessary. Users will be able to change the input, control the volume and much more with their voice and Fire TV alone. On top of all that, the IR emitter Amazon is adding to the device will allow you to control most other televisions and A/V equipment in your home as well.
As for price, it's uncertain what either of the devices will cost as they haven't officially been announced yet. However, AFTVNews speculates the mid-range device will set you back between $60 and $80, and the new flagship device will cost upwards of $100. Both will likely be released before 2017 is over, though the release date for the more feature-heavy model may be pushed into early 2018.
How do you feel about the features Amazon is adding to its Fire TV products? Let us know in the comments!
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Tory Foulk is a writer at Mobile Nations. She lives at the intersection of technology and sorcery and enjoys radio, bees, and houses in small towns. When she isn't working on articles, you'll likely find her listening to her favorite podcasts in a carefully curated blanket nest. You can follow her on Twitter at @tsfoulk.