Fire TV Stick Alternatives

//Fire TV Stick Alternatives

Fire TV Stick Alternatives

Fire TV Stick AlternativesThis article will provide you with some nice Fire TV Stick alternatives due to the fact that these devices have been difficult to come by since the beginning of 2017.  The goal of this article is to find quality Android TV Kodi boxes that are equal or better when comparing the specs.

Why is the Fire TV Stick and Fire TV out of stock?  My guess is that the explosion of Kodi and its ability to operate so nicely on these devices is the main reason.  It is very difficult to purchase a comparable product at the same low price that Amazon offers.  More than likely, Amazon is losing money on selling these actual devices but re-coups that revenue through the ads that people see on the Fire TV Stick user interface, Amazon Prime memberships, and probably many more affiliate programs that we are unaware of.

As of this article, the Amazon Fire TV Stick won’t be available to ship until May 13th and the Fire TV won’t ship until May 5th, 2017.  One problem is that if you don’t order now, the date will keep being pushed back since Amazon can’t keep up with the demand.

It appears that Fire TVs and Fire TV Sticks are now back in stock at Amazon.  Use the links below to order your device before the next shortage.

Click Here To Order An Amazon Fire TV Stick

Click Here To Order A 2nd Generation Fire TV

 

If you don’t want to wait for a Fire TV Stick or Fire TV, you can always purchase an Android Kodi Box that will perform just as great if not better.  If you use Kodi as the main application on your streaming device, you won’t miss anything by not using a Fire TV Stick or Fire TV.  If you like using many of the other remote friendly applications on the Fire TV Stick, an Android Kodi Box might not be for you.  The reason for this is due to the fact that many Android applications don’t work well with a remote…they are built for tablets and smartphones.

Android TV

Android TV Platform

In 2014, Google introduced the Android TV operating system which is a smart tv platform that works well with a remote in a 10-foot interface.  You will find the Android TV operating system now installed on devices such as NVIDIA Shield TV, NVIDIA Shield TV Pro Home Media Server, Razer Forge TV, Mi Box, and various Android TV integrated televisions.  The Android TV user interface is very similar to the Amazon Fire TV Stick and Fire TV.  It works very well with a remote.

Important Note:  Kodi can be installed on the above Android TV devices but some of them carry a hefty price tag.  Many Kodi enthusiasts rave about the power of the NVIDIA Shield TV mentioned above and wouldn’t use any other streaming device.

Keep in mind that Android TV operating system is not installed on your typical Android Kodi Box.  These boxes simply come with the stock Android operating system, which may have been modified slightly by the manufacturer to work better with a remote.  When I say stock Android, I am referring to the Android operating system commonly found on smartphones and tablets.  But, the good news is that we can install most of the Android TV Applications onto the Android Kodi Boxes and those will work nicely with the remote.

You can often find these Android TV applications by doing a search within the Google Play Store such as “Android TV”.  Most Android Kodi Boxes come equipped with Google Play App Store so it is easy to install these remote-friendly applications that are meant for Android TV devices.

If you click the link below, you will see that this search renders Android Applications that are built for the Android TV operating system, which means they will probably play nice with Android Kodi Boxes.

Search – Android TV

Please understand that even though some of these may show as compatible for Android TV, they still may not function correctly on an Android TV Box.  A good example of that is PlayStation Vue where this Android TV application won’t work properly on an Android Kodi Box since the device is rooted.  PlayStation Vue will only work on devices that aren’t rooted.  Most Android Kodi Boxes come rooted by default.

Since we want to purchase a device that performs as good or better than the Fire TV Stick, we must first know what the specs are for the FireStick.

Amazon Fire TV Stick Specs

Processor: MediaTek Quad-core ARM 1.3 GHzAmazon Fire TV Stick
GPU:  Mali450 MP4
RAM Memory: 1 GB
Internal Storage:  8 GB
Supported Resolution:  Up to 1080p
Wi-Fi Connectivity: Dual-band, dual-antenna Wi-Fi supports 2×2 MIMO 802.11a/b/g/n/ac
Bluetooth:  Bluetooth 4.1
Audio Support:  Dolby Audio, 5.1 surround sound, 2ch stereo, and HDMI audio pass through up to 7.1
Ethernet:  No
Expandable Storage:  No

After examining the Fire TV Stick specs above, the following would be important to me if I wanted to purchase a similar or better Kodi Box as an alternative.

  1.  Quad-core Processor
  2.  RAM 1 GB – I would personally recommend at least 2 GB as this will help with Kodi buffering.
  3. Supported Resolution:  Up to 1080p – This is a personal preference and depends on the television that you will be using this Fire TV Stick alternative on.  I am perfectly fine with resolutions up to 1080p as most streams don’t go any higher than this anyway.  Most newer Android Kodi Boxes will support 4K anyway, so this shouldn’t be a factor.
  4. Wi-Fi – Dual-band support – Nice to have additional support as most good routers provide the dual band feature.
  5. Bluetooth 4.1 – Important as there are many devices that we can pair with Android Kodi Boxes such as keyboards, gamepads, speakers, etc.
  6. Audio Support – Much of this depends on the stream that you are accessing and whether or not the format is supported – this may be important for those streaming their own media files and want a certain audio feature.
  7. Ethernet – No – This is a personal preference and I would not require an ethernet adapter as all of my connections are wireless.
  8. Expandable Storage – No – Since I stream most of my content and don’t require a ton of storage for apps and games, this isn’t as important for me.
  9. Android 6.0 or Higher – It is important that your chosen device come with at least Android 5.0 as Kodi Krypton 17 does not support anything lower than that.  I would suggest at least Android 6.0 to future-proof your device.

To sum it up, the most important aspects for me personally is to have at least a quad-core processor with 2 GB of RAM Memory.  I would also want to ensure that the device would support Bluetooth, and Android 6.0 or higher is installed.

Hopefully, you can see my reasoning above and come to your own conclusions on what is important for you, personally.

Fire TV Stick Alternatives

The first thing that I would suggest doing is searching the Amazon site for the following search term.  Simply click my link below and that will open a new tab for you and perform the search.

Search – Android Boxes

Once your new tab is loaded in your browser, you can use the “Sort by” filter and adjust the results to your liking based on Relevance, Price, Customer Reviews, and Newest Arrivals.  Make sure that you don’t purchase a Roku or any other device that doesn’t support Kodi media center.  As long as you stay with the Kodi Boxes that run the Android Operating system, you should be good to go.

Also, another important note is that Kodi 17 only supports Android 5.0 and higher.  For safe measure, I would ensure that  your device has at least Android 6.0.

Below is a list of my three favorite Fire TV Stick alternatives that cost under $70.  Since I require at least 2 GB of RAM, it is difficult for me to remain withing the same price range as the Amazon Fire TV Stick.

T95Z Plus Android Kodi Box

T95Z Plus Review

T95Z Plus Android Kodi Box On Amazon – I am linking to an Amazon search as there are many companies branding this product and you can find the one with the best price/shipping options.

T95Z Plus Kodi Box On GearBest

Important Specs:
System:  Android 6.0
Processor:  Amlogic S912 2.0 GHz Octa Core
RAM:  2 GB
Storage:  16 GB

Click HERE for T95Z Plus TROYPOINT Review

Beelink GT1 Android Kodi Box

Beelink GT1 Android Kodi Box On Amazon

Beelink GT1 Android Kodi Box On GearBest

Important Specs:
System:  Android 6.0
Processor: Amlogic S912 2.0 GHz Octa Core
RAM:  2 GB
Storage:  16 GB

Click HERE for Beelink GT1 TROYPOINT Review

MECOOL M8S PRO TV Box

M8S PRO TV Box Review
MECOOL M8S PRO TV Box On GearBest

Important Specs:
System: Android 7.1
Processor: Amlogic S912 2.0 GHz Octa Core
RAM: 2 GB or 3 GB DDR 4
Storage: 16 GB

Click Here for MECOOL M8S PRO TV Box TROYPOINT Review

 

Tell us in the comments area below if you have a recommendation for the readers based on your experience with Android Kodi Boxes.  Thank you!

 

2017-06-26T20:25:47-05:00 By |Fire TV|20 Comments
  • Shanda Bogle

    I would love to add the kodi app to my Samsung smart tv. Is this possible? Maybe with a workaround like the downloader app??

    • Hi Shanda, does your Smart TV have Google Play Store on it? If so, you could just install it from there. If it doesn’t, I don’t know how you would go about doing this.

  • SyCoREAPER

    None of these garbage boxes will have any support or updates or even a refined experience like you would with Amazon ones. You are better off waiting.

  • Oktyabr

    I just breezed over the article and didn’t see mention of one of the strongest features of a Fire TV stick/box… Amazon video on demand! Yes, Kodi is the reason I bought one, but if it’s your only “smart” appliance, being able to watch the usual suspects such as Hulu, Netflix and yes, Amazon Prime Video, may be a deal maker or deal breaker. I think the nVidia shield can host Amazon video… not too sure about most of the others.

  • Steve Watts

    Hi Troy,
    I’ve been programming boxes for a while, and my favorite 2 are:
    For an Octa-core: it’s the T95Z Plus.
    For a Quad core: it’s the Q-Box.
    Both are easy to set up. I always delete the pre-loaded Kodi and then load the latest stable version of Kodi, using your kodistable link. On all of my Android boxes and Amazon Fire TV products I then load Fire TV Guru as the build. It’s a great build with built in automatic cache cleanup and great online support.
    Also a warning to stay away from the AE254 Octa-core box. Even though it’s made by OTT like many of the others, it has no direct shortcut to Kodi built in to the “home screen” or the Apps screen. And it won’t let you add one, so every time you want to start KODI you have to go into Settings, Apps, click on Kodi and then “open”. No matter what I tried it would not recognize Kodi to add it to the shortcuts.
    Steve Watts
    Fire Unleashed member

    • Michael Habel

      By programing do you mean actually rolling your own Builds of Android? Or mearly just installing stuff off the Imterwibbles? ‘Cause that my friend is NOT programing.

  • ajandco

    If your going to buy a Chinese TV box, you’d better be able to understand how to flash roms to upgrade the firmware. I have an S905x from China and while the specs are good and it’s around $40, the stock firmware is terrible. However if your tech savvy plus the community is large enough for that device you can get one working just like a Nvidia shield. Minus the widevine level 3 authentication, only a few TV boxes have that.

    Don’t buy cheap if you don’t know about android flashing.

    • Michael Habel

      As an owner of such Boxes an AmLogic S802 (Beelink MXIII), and a broken (as shipped!) S912 (Yoka TV KB2). Might I inquire where you were able to get ‘Updates’ from. That is substantive Updates, and not some Lipsticked cosmetically enhanced Pig?

  • ghostinrags

    I shot the moon, went for the gaming Fire box. Never look back, great investment. You can stream to it via MiraCast or AllCast, installing Kodi is easy as pie, and when you set it up right, BANG! The sound quality and clarity of video is amazing. The controller makes things easier, plus playing games is a very cool addition. The Stick is fine as well, just got to watch the cache – has a tendency to fill up.

    • Kim Petrisha

      Hey Ghost!
      I’ve had a 1st gen stick for quite awhile now, and because it didnt hold much I’d have to delete things to install others. Got tired of that so I ordered the gaming edition Fire box. I’ve had it for a few months and haven’t installed kodi yet. The reason being when I tried to install using the download er app w/game controller it wouldn’t let me select (no matter what button I pushed, tried them all) to download kodi. So I just ordered a refurb. 2nd gen fire stick so I could use the remote to add kodi to the fire box. That being said, what’s your suggestion for installs on the fire box? Thanks!

  • Diane Harvey Moore

    I just ordered Fire TV from Best Buy. They do not have a shortage of stick either.
    Free 2 day delivery. Same prices/ I don’t understand why everyone seems to think they have to get them from Amazon.

    • Thanks Diane, not sure why Best Buy would have them now as they have been out of stock as well. Thanks for the tip. Can’t find them in any stores around where I live either.

      • Diane Harvey Moore

        I ordered on line at noon today and just got an email saying it has shipped. I trried Amazon first. No luck. When Amazon was out around Christmas I got a fire stick from Best Buy in 2 days. They seem to have a secret stash. Fire Stick is to slow using Kodi so that’s why I decided to try Fire TV

    • Joe Kline

      There’s a shortage in Toledo Ohio Best Buy don’t have them here either do target Meijers or the AT&T stores they all sell them here in Toledo

  • Michael Habel

    And, not One of these Boxes, outside of the nVIDIA Shield (Honourable mention). Could ever be a replacement, for one very notable problem. Being budget “Fully Loaded Kodi Boxes”. They all lack one critical thing needed for watching Amazon, or Netflix, and that would be Widevine Level 1 Certification. Alas these things are all Widevine Level 3. So on that merit these ARE NOT Fire Stick / TV replacements. While you might find a Netflix App on Google Play. That will only output a 480p Stream (See above!). Good luck finding a Amazon Video App. Which is why One buys a Fire Stick / TV for.

    • Thanks for comment, Michael. As I stated in my article above, if you use Kodi for the majority of the time, the Android Kodi boxes work fine and if that is reason you use Fire TV Stick, then yes, it is an alternative.

    • Bernie McNulty

      just install Amazon underground to any android box so you can watch prime video

      • Michael Habel

        1080p? 2160p? Much like Netflix you would be very lucky to just land up with 480p. While a Kodi Box (Fully Loaded, or not.), May be great for Kodi. That doesn’t mean its a great Box overall. Yes the Shield TV is on the upper end, of a Minix Box, you just get so much more out of it. When the Shield came out. It launched with the same 4.4.2 KitKat Version that a good deal of ‘Droid Boxes still carry to this day. The Shield TV however is current on Nougat, and nVIDIAs support of the Device has never been in question.

        And let’s be honest here… Kodi is slowly becoming the victim of its own success. What with the international crackdowns on streaming Sites on the one hand, and other “Providers” taking a stance against unofficial Add-ons that skirt ’round their -Mal- um… Adware advertising revenue. (Cough Kiss Anime / Asia / Cartoon / Manga). Plus the added rumors of Kodi being in talks with Nagra to implement some forthcoming DRM. I can’t help but wonder how much time it has left.*

        *Yes I know that Kodi in its urgent form would soldier on as a forked project. But again with such ‘providers’ actively preventing Kodi users from their Content. Al-la Kiss. Kodi will eventually die off anyway.

      • Kim Petrisha

        Hey Bernie! Just installed IPVanish to my new fire stick. Now I’m getting an error code when I try watching anything on Amazon Prime. Will Amazon underground solve my problem? I am a prime member but now can’t watch anything because of IPVanish.
        .

        • Kim, just disconnect IPV before using Prime.