Have you recently purchased an Amazon Fire TV? Your next step is to download all of the coolest apps. There’s a lot you can do besides actually watching television. Let’s look at some of the coolest Amazon Fire TV apps you can download using the Amazon App Store.
Chances are, you’ve not only heard of Netflix, but you’ve used it in the past. You might use it frequently on your computer, smartphone, tablet, or gaming console. It should come as no surprise that it’s available through the Amazon App Store and is one of the most downloaded apps there is.
Netflix happens to be the number one provider of streaming movies and television shows. Amazon does have its own library of streaming content, but the amount of videos it has available still falls significantly short of what is available through Netflix.
That’s probably why Netflix has close to 90 million members spread out through nearly 200 countries. Altogether, Netflix users watch more than 125 million hours of movies and television each day. They have become so popular and made so much money that they’ve launched several of their own original “Netflix Only” shows. Most of these shows were a huge critical success.
Are you interested in breaking away from the standard cable model? Tired of paying eighty bucks a month for 200 hundred channels that don’t really have anything you want to watch? If so, then Netflix should be one of the first apps for the Amazon Fire TV that you use. The app itself is free. Using it comes with a small subscription fee, but it’s worth every penny.
If you are looking for a slightly less commercial streaming experience, then Youtube is the way to go. Once again, you’ve probably already heard of this app and maybe have already seen hundreds of hilarious cat videos. What Netflix does for movies and television, Youtube does for home recordings and music videos.
Youtube has attempted to break into the movie and television scene with their own paid subscription to an online movie library. However, most people don’t come to Youtube for that. After all, anything they can show you, you can probably just watch on Netflix. Youtube shines when it comes to sharing user-made content.
On this app you will find how-to videos, music videos, funny fails, attempts at standup, recorded pranks, bloopers caught on camera, and just about everything else that wasn’t produced in a Hollywood studio.
If you already have a Google account, then you have a Youtube account. There is no cost to download the app for the Fire TV and there is no cost to use the app. All of the videos, aside from the actual movie content, is completely free.
Watching movies or videos on the Amazon Fire TV doesn’t require using a paid streaming app like Netflix. Not if you already own the video and it’s downloaded on your smartphone or another device. There are ways you can stream the content from those devices to your Amazon Fire TV. The easiest way to go about this is by using the Amazon Allcast app.
Allcast lets you stream content from a variety of sources to your Amazon Fire TV. It also lets you stream content to a Roku device, Apple TV, and an Xbox. It’s a fairly versatile app designed to compete with the Google Chromecast app. It’s not quite as flexible as Chromecast, but it’s still the best option for an Amazon TV.
Many Fire TV users use the Allcast app to cast their photos, music, and videos to their televisions. It’s great if you already have movies backed up on your device and you don’t want to re-download them or stream them through another service. The Allcast does have its limitations, though.
There is a free version and a premium version of the app. The free version is severely limited. It has a five-minute streaming limit for videos, so you won’t be watching any movies on the free version. It’s just enough for you to test the app and see if you like it. If you do, then you should invest in the premium version so that you can cast your content without interruption.
The app has also had some problems with specific devices. Using the free version gives you a chance to determine if the app is compatible with your smartphone or tablet. If it doesn’t work, then there’s no sense in upgrading to the premium version. There are some alternative casting apps that aren’t as popular, yet may be compatible with your device.
4. VLC Player For Fire.
One final option that doesn’t require online streaming or casting from a separate device is playing the content locally using a media player. On Windows, you might use Windows Media Player. Another well-known player that is available on Windows, Android, Linux, and Amazon Fire TV is the VLC Media Player.
Most people prefer the VLC player once they’ve had a chance to compare it to the standard Windows Media Player. There are more features, more customization options, and it can play nearly any audio or video format that exists. For example, Windows Media Player cannot play MKV video files. The VLC media player handles these files with ease.
VLC also has a casting option similar to that of Allcast, but at the moment it only works with content that is stored on a server or local computer. Mobile device functionality is not yet implemented.
Perhaps the best part of VLC is that every aspect of it is completely free. It’s a free download, with all of its features already unlocked, and no subscription model. Easily the best media player in the Amazon Fire TV apps.
When you think of online games you might think of titles like “World of Warcraft”, but Minecraft is a game that is right up there in terms of ranking. It’s a sandbox game with a relatively simple concept. The world is made of small 3D cubes. You can explore this massive world, take the cubes, and then use them to build your own creations. Other online players can visit and explore your massive cube creations.
In addition to the creation and sharing aspect, there is also an exploration, combat, and gathering side of the game. It’s an altogether balanced and entertaining gaming experience. It’s already available on Windows, PS4, Xbox, and Android. Now it’s available on the Amazon Fire TV.
Online play is not restricted to people using the same device. It’s cross-platform, which means you can play with others who are using an Xbox, PS4, or Windows. Minecraft has become such a huge hit across all of these platforms that it is actually the second-best-selling video game ever. The only game to have ever sold more copies than Minecraft is Tetris. It is the number one selling game on PC with World of Warcraft in a close second place.
To play Minecraft, or any other game-based Amazon Fire TV apps, you will need an Amazon Fire TV game controller. The game controller lets you play hundreds of different games that are available for download through the Amazon App Store. It is compatible with the Amazon Fire TV and the Amazon Fire TV Stick. The controller even has voice commands for locating games.
In addition to the price of the controller, you’ll have to pay a small one-time fee for the Minecraft app. They are both worthy investments.
6. Shovel Knight.
A game doesn’t have to be a number one best seller to be a great game. If you love complex, difficult, and entertaining side-scrolling action, then you should consider the Shovel Knight app. It features the perfect combination of retro graphics with modern day functionality. It’s an 8-bit adventure that will feel familiar, yet new if you’ve ever played a game that came out in 80’s or early 90’s.
Much of the core gameplay was inspired by the original Mega Man games for the NES. However, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have anything new to offer. There are large hub towns, a manageable inventory, and plenty of NPC’s that you can barter with. Playing the game will bring back memories of Mario 3, Mega Man, Duck Tales, Castlevania, and Zelda II. It does all of this without feeling boring, tired, or cliché.
The music, art style, and plot of the game really helped it stand out from the games where it drew inspiration. Though the gameplay may seem familiar, it looks and sounds so different that you know you’re playing a new, original game. That’s why it’s been voted as the best indie game to surface in 2014.
7. TED TV App.
Most people either love TED talks or they hate them. If you’re one of the people who enjoy TED talks, then you will love the TED TV app. It’s a video streaming app that doesn’t focus on blockbuster movies or funny cat videos. It’s all about bringing your favorite intellectual discussions to your Amazon Fire TV.
If you don’t already know what TED talks are, they are short video lectures given to large audiences. The lectures can focus on nearly any subject. Some focus on ways to improve life, others on more scientific inquiries, and others may focus on financial goals.
The app is particularly helpful for people whose first language isn’t English. It provides most of the TED talks in several different languages. There are thousands of talks stored in their archives and new talks are added every day.
There is an interesting way to find videos through this app called the “Inspire Me” feature. You choose an experience you want to view and then tell the app the amount of time you have to spend watching the lectures. It then creates a playlist that delivers on that experience within the allotted amount of time. It can miss the mark sometimes, but it is still a unique and interesting way to queue new videos.
8. Pandora Radio App.
Pandora is to streaming music what Netflix is to streaming videos. The big difference between the two is that Pandora is generally free with an option for a premium service that doesn’t include advertisements.
Pandora is a music streaming service that lets you pick an artist, genre, or specific station. Music plays and you are given a certain number of “skips” you can use when you don’t like a song. Unlike some other streaming music apps, there are no “human created” stations. You also can’t choose a specific song to listen to.
If you can find a station that you really like, then Pandora can be the perfect streaming apps. However, if you find that they play a lot of songs you don’t like, then you’ll be aching to skip more songs. The only way to get an unlimited number of skips is by joining their premium membership. The membership features available will differ between your Amazon Fire TV and your desktop. For example, the desktop version won’t have unlimited skips, but the Fire TV version will.
The only music streaming service that could possibly surpass Pandora is Spotify. There are some big differences between the two. Spotify gives you a lot more control over what you are actually listening to. You can even add your own personal music files to your playlist.
Unlike Pandora, you can search for specific songs rather than just listen to a station that focuses on a certain artist. However, Spotify doesn’t have access to some of the biggest names in the music industry. Those artists that do sign agreements with Spotify usually offer some cool incentives. Some artists even release their albums early on Spotify for premium members.
There’s A Lot More.