Amazon Fire TV Gets Musical (but it ain’t Prime)

Dave Zatz —  June 30, 2014 — 9 Comments

amazon-fire-tv-music2

A curious thing happened yesterday while perusing my Amazon Fire TV … scrolling thru the left-hand textual menu seemed more tedious than usual and, sure enough, several new items were present. A quick check to the (slightly re-ordered) settings confirmed the Fire TV had been updated (to 51.1.1). It appears the headliners are a kid-oriented FreeTime and native Amazon Music playback.

Of course, Amazon Cloudplayer was a bizarre and notable absence upon Amazon Fire TV launch and this update goes a long way towards filling the gap. Yet the Fire TV team clearly remains out of sync with other Amazon initiatives as the newly announced Amazon Prime Music service is MIA.

I took Music for a quick spin and it functions as you’d expect, with the ability to access previously purchased Amazon MP3 tracks and auto-ripped CDs. When browsing around the Fire TV home screen, music continues to play (with a cool little animated equalizer). Most impressive is our audio collections are accessible via remote voice search. Although, I must still enunciate poorly as Amazon was unable to find Than Halen.

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9 responses to Amazon Fire TV Gets Musical (but it ain’t Prime)

  1. Amazon’s official update page doesn’t list 51.1.1 yet, meaning our intel is currently limited to what we dig up. And if it’s anything like the first update, rollout will be staggered over a week or so – you may not have it yet, although feel free to force a check in.

    Here’s a Vine of Amazon Music in action:
    https://vine.co/m/AMCG2Et8Mw-7CgxcxJUmtC2-8KGACXTc

  2. I noticed this on Saturday. I had been looking in the app section for an Amazon music app and was surprised it wasn’t in the app section. So I thought maybe it had been there for awhile and I just didn’t notice it since I was looking in the wrong spot for it. So far, I still prefer the Roku app for playing back my Amazon music. But I only messed with the FireTV music for an hour or so. It didn’t seem to do much for me. Maybe I just need to use it some more to get used to it.

  3. “Although, I must still enunciate poorly as Amazon was unable to find Than Halen.”

    It perfectly understands what you are trying to say. It just wants to gently improve your musical taste.

  4. I got this update on Wednesday.

    Still missing a lot of things I like which is why my Roku 3 is still my most used box.

  5. Hm, sounds suspicious. I’m not monitoring my bandwidth from within the home and Verizon doesn’t provide a widget (as there isn’t a FiOS cap at this time) … but I did reach out to a Verizon PR person to see if they can pull my usage. Not sure when or if I’ll hear back as I got an out of office and didn’t want to escalate for maybe a minor thing.

  6. Amazon confirms the excessive data usage issue but notes it is a bug, and not related to its ASAP caching feature as first thought by the writer:

    There is a small possibility if a customer uses the “mosaic” feature (not the default setting) on the screensaver images will not be cached. We’re working on a software update that will fix the bug, and in the meantime customers can turn off the mosaic view for the screensaver to avoid the issue.

  7. Oddly enough, screensavers account for more than 20% of cumulative global warming.

  8. I guess I need to check my usage. I do use the screen saver just to have the pictures pop up, but 98% of the time I am not vieiwng my FireTv. But I am also on FiOS so bandwidth usage is not an issue yet.

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