Amazon Fire TV
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Amazon Fire TV (first and second-generations) is a series of Android-based (Fire OS) set-top-box that contains a powerful ARM processor (that can even handle some of the more heavy Kodi skins). First released in 2014, Amazon's Fire TV series stands above some of the other Android-based offerings due to Amazon's strong product support and because it contains more remote friendly versions of Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and other video service clients, which generally makes it a good pairing with Kodi.
Amazon have also released Amazon Fire TV Stick as a low cost version in a HDMI-stick format, and while the Amazon Fire TV Stick also uses the same Android-based (Fire OS) software platform it contains less powerful ARM processor hardware it should still technically provides the same video playback features and capabilities as the first-generation of Amazon Fire TV, at least as far as running Kodi on it. The second-generation of Amazon Fire TV however does support newer video codecs and higher resolutions than the Fire TV Stick model.
1 Fire TV Gen-1 and Gen-2 differences
The main differences between the first-generation Fire TV (released in 2014) and second-generation TV (released in 2015) is that the second-genration supports newer video codecs (HEVC and VP9) plus higher resolutions (Ultra HD /2160p at up to 30 fps, also known as "4K" resolution), and that includes HDMI 2.0 with HDCP 2.2 as required for 4K output by some streaming apps such as Netflix. And while the first-generation Fire TV (2014) shipped with an older version of the Fire TV operating-system it can now be upgraded to the same new version as the second-generation Fire TV (2015), so software-wise the old and new hardware can still support the same features and functions that are not dependent on newer Android hardware (such as video codecs and resolution).
2 Fire TV Stick differences
In a nutshell: slower processor (which won't be a huge difference for average Kodi usage), Amazon Fire TV Stick only has 1GB of RAM, comes withoput no USB port and wired Ethernet, as it features just HDMI, power, WiFi, and Bluetooth. No versions of the Fire TV Stick supports newer video codecs (HEVC and VP9), nor does it support higher resolutions than Full HD / 1080p, (so no support for Ultra HD /2160p at up to 30 fps, which also known as "4K" resolution). All released versions of the Fire TV Stick still works pretty well from a Kodi standpoint.
Other than the new voice remote control (that has an integrated microphone) there are no differences hardware between the first-generation Fire TV Stick (released in 2014) and second-generation "new" Fire TV Stick (released in 2015). The older version of the Fire TV operating-system can be upgraded on the first-generation Fire TV Stick (released in 2014) to the same new version as the "new" second-generation Fire TV Stick (2015), so software-wise the old and new hardware can still support the same features and functions that are not dependent on newer Android hardware (such as video codecs and resolution).
3 installing Kodi
Kodi can be installed on any Fire TV or Fire TV Stick. Root is not required.
4 Bypassing Amazon Home
This page used to have a bunch of complicated instructions about different methods of launching Kodi. Ignore all the old methods and just use FireStarter (download). Not only is this the best way to launch all of your apps on the Fire TV (not just Kodi), but FireStarter will also handle installing Kodi and keeping Kodi updated. Seriously, just use FireStarter.
5 Launching Android apps within Kodi
Android apps can be launched from within Kodi by going to custom home items.
6 Copying files
The easiest ways to copy files onto the Fire TV for Kodi is to either use the Kodi file manager or use ES File Explorer from the Amazon app store.
7.1 Box and Stick
7.1.1 Bluetooth remote
To reboot the Fire TV with the Bluetooth remote, hold Play/Pause (8) and Select (4) for 5 seconds.
7.1.2 Bluetooth keyboards and gamepads
Any Bluetooth input device, such as a keyboard or gamepad, that works in general on the Fire TV will also work in Kodi.
People are reporting that the Amazon Fire TV has basic CEC support. Reported working keys are UP, DOWN, RIGHT, LEFT, SELECT, PLAY and PAUSE (depending on the TV brand).
7.2 Box only
USB port allows for various additional remote types, such as FLIRC, various RF dongles, etc. Most of these devices will show up as a keyboard type input.
- USB keyboards
See keyboard controls for how to control Kodi using a keyboard.
Additional Fire TV controls goes as followed:
Key Action F11
or "browser search"
Voice Search (Does not send mic audio) F12 Fire TV home screen Esc Fire TV back button Ctrl+Esc
or "Menu" (to the right of the Windows key on the right side)
Fire TV menu button Alt+Tab ⇆ Recent App Ctrl+Alt+Delete System reset
7.2.2 USB gamepads
Any USB gamepad that works in general for the Fire TV will also work in Kodi.
- Logitech F710 Wireless Gamepad (uses a small USB dongle)
- Xbox 360 wired gamepad
- Xbox 360 wireless gamepad works if you use the Wireless Gaming Receiver for Windows
8 Known issues
- VC-1 / WMV9 encoded videos is currently not hardware decoded in Kodi on the Amazon Fire TV box or stick
- Live IPTV (via multicast UDP/RTP) is currently not supported due to missing kernel support.
9 Random notes
Feel free to place various notes, tips, and links here. As this section of the wiki gets more organized, those notes will be properly sorted. Consider this like a dumping ground for when you're not sure where to put something.
- Micro USB port on the Amazon Fire TV Stick does not support USB host functions (no hard drives or USB input).