Fire TV Cube Review: Better picture, without touching the remote

Over the years Amazon Fire TV Stick has taken sensational features to millions of televisions worldwide at a very affordable price point. Now, Amazon wants to push the game and offer more of its Fire TV stables with a premium new offering called the Fire TV Cube.

So what is the Fire TV Cube?

The Fire TV Cube does what the Fire TV Stick does, but it adds a hands-free experience, better connectivity and more processing power. It has a cube shape and can connect to the TV via HDMI cable, which you will have to buy extra if there is not one lying around in your house.

The big difference is that Fire TV Cube is a standalone Alexa device and can respond to queries, as well as control the TV and other devices connected to it. The Fire TV Cube comes with a transformer that allows it to connect directly to the internet using an ethernet cable – connectivity is an issue on Echo devices at times when you’re syncing audio from a TV to a different speaker – and an IR Extender cable to control it. other devices, not so clever.

Amazon, Amazon Fire TV Cube, Amazon Fire TV Cube remote controller. (Image Source: The Indian Express / Nandagopal Rajan)

Fire TV Cube: What’s Good?

With the Fire TV Stick, you could use just press the Mic button on top and use voice commands to search for content or just ask things to Alexa. However, this only worked when the stick was on.

Now, with the Fire TV Cube, you can walk into a room, ask Alexa to turn on the TV and then play Young Sheldon from Amazon Prime. Works like a breeze and if the episode being played is one you’ve watched, you can ask Alexa to change the episode or turn off the TV. All without even finding out where you left the last remote.

Interestingly, while the Fire TV Cube can be operated completely hands-free, it has a better distance than the Fire TV Stick. The new remote has replaced the Mic button with one Alexa and has dedicated buttons for Prime Video, Netflix, Amazon Music and all apps. There is a forward and invert button that had to be something you had to control with the ring and select buttons earlier.

Amazon, Amazon Fire TV Cube, The Amazon Fire TV Cube is an Alexa-enabled device that can respond to queries. (Image Source: The Indian Express / Nandagopal Rajan)

The Fire TV Cube has a processor that plays 4K content in Dolby Vision HDR10 + at up to 60 frames per second and with Dolby Atmos, as long as you’re not stuck with Full HD TVs like me. On Full HD TV, we can’t make a huge difference in video quality to the previous generation Fire TV Stick. The Cube has no audio ports, so you connect to an audio bar if needed via Bluetooth.

One good thing about the Fire TV Cube is being a full Alexa device and doing everything any other echo device does. So if you ask a query it gives an answer and even throws the result of the text on the screen for good measure. If you ask for a song it plays on TV because the Cube has no great speaker. You can connect other Alexa-enabled devices to this one and manage as you would an Echo. Actually, look at this as the Echo for the house, but connected to a TV and speaker for better sound quality.

Fire TV Cube: What’s Not So Good?

The Fire TV Cube has prices that are three times the price of the Fire TV Stick, so only buy this if you have high-end TVs at home and pay extra for Netflix 4K streaming. This does not replace your Fire TV Stick.

Fire TV Cube: Should You Buy?

Yes, but only if you have high end 4K TVs at home and you may not yet have invested in an Alexa device. For such consumers this is a great product that can become your focus of smart entertainment, connecting and controlling far more than your TV. Others may stick to the Fire TV Stick which are the smartest options for consuming content.