After much speculation, Amazon today revealed its take on the video streaming hardware: the Fire TV.
Like the Kindle Fire family of tablets, the Fire TV makes use of a heavily modified fork of Google’s Android operating system. And the Fire TV packs a lot of, uh… firepower under the hood thanks to a 1.7GHz quad-core Snapdragon 8064 processor paired with 2GB of RAM and an Adreno 320 GPU.
According to Amazon, the hardware specs make the Fire TV roughly three times faster than competing offerings from Apple and Roku. Amazon also says that any perceptible lag while browsing the user interface has been banished as well.
Other features include Bluetooth 4.0, dual-band 802.11n wireless connectivity, and 8GB of internal storage.
The Fire TV will of course put Amazon Instant Video front and center, but there will be plenty of apps to further flesh out the devices streaming capabilities. Partner apps already lineup for Fire TV include Hulu, MLB.tv, NBA, Netflix, Plex, Showtime, Vimeo, and YouTube.
And considering that the Fire TV is a device that fits into the vast Amazon ecosystem, it will have full access to Amazon Cloud Drive. Other features include support for Amazon’s “FreeTime” parental control tool and voice search though the remote.
Another rumor was today confirmed with regards to the gaming capabilities of the Fire TV — this also explains the beefed up hardware specs. Customers will be able to add a $40 wireless gaming controller to play games that have been custom-tailored to take advantage of the Fire TV platform.
Amazon promises that that most games available for Fire TV will be priced at under $2 (over 1,000 titles will be available for free), and gamers can expect to see such titles at Asphalt 8 and a specially optimized version of Minecraft.
The Fire TV is available today for $99.
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