The rise of smart home technology has many of us searching for the latest gadgets to make our home life more convenient.
And if you’ve recently acquired a smart TV, you may consider investing in an Amazon Fire Stick. But is it worth spending money on it if your TV can already connect to the essential streaming services?
You don’t need a Fire Stick if you have a smart TV. However, having one will give you access to thousands of free apps, games, and movies. It is a quick and inexpensive way to boost the number of streaming platforms while also improving the functionality of your smart TV.
Still on the fence about whether you need an Amazon Fire Stick with your smart TV? This guide will explain the benefits of owning a Fire Stick with your smart TV and whether you need one.
Also read: Does Firestick Have 5.1 Surround Sound?
What Does a Fire Stick Do for a Smart TV?
An Amazon Fire Stick is a media streaming device that allows you to access a great variety of channels and apps from your smart TV. It is portable and plugs straight into the HDMI port.
Adding a Fire Stick to your smart TV will:
- Increase the number of streaming options
- Enhance the functions of your smart TV
- Allow you to take your streaming platforms with you when you travel
The Fire Stick supports all the major streaming platforms. Many smart TVs will offer you essential streaming services, but these options can be limiting. Music lovers can also listen to various platforms and create playlists using the Fire Stick.
Reasons to Get a Fire Stick for Your Smart TV
There are various reasons why adding a Fire Stick to your smart TV is a sensible idea. To start, if your smart TV is no longer supported by some streaming services, getting a Fire Stick is way cheaper than buying a new TV. Besides that, apps and menu items will load faster than the OS on your smart TV.
One of the main reasons for getting a Fire Stick is the additional streaming options. The Fire Stick gives users access to 14,000 free and paid apps. These include not only every streaming service you could ever want, but also apps for setting up home servers and even games.
The Amazon Fire Stick remote is small, simple, and straightforward, with only a few buttons to choose from. The size of the remote makes it easy to travel with and take your favorite programs along with you. This remote is a convenient size for storage and fits in your pocket while watching TV.
Quick Response Time
Sometimes your smart TV can take a little longer to load than you’d like. The unfortunate reality of streaming TV shows is that you must rely on a solid internet connection. Lag, glitches, and navigating through endless menus can negatively affect your viewing experience.
Adding a Fire Stick to your smart TV can improve the response time and launch apps faster. The Fire Stick is designed for streaming, which means it is structured to provide smooth content for its users. Switching between platforms and selecting different points in a movie is much nicer with a Fire Stick.
Smart TV remotes can be confusing and difficult for some family members to use. You don’t need much technical experience to use a Fire Stick. It is compatible with any TV with an HDMI port. You just have to plug it in.
The Fire Stick also has a simple interface that’s intuitive and easy to use. Regular software updates will ensure your Fire Stick runs smoothly and provides the latest functions.
Alexa Voice Control
The Alexa voice control button on the Fire Stick allows you to navigate streaming programs conveniently by speaking to it.
You can ask Alexa to show specific programs or movies without scrolling endlessly through platforms with your remote. Users can also control the volume and playback with voice control.
Some of the commands you can give your Fire Stick include:
- Setting reminders
- Adjusting the volume
- Switching inputs
- Fast-forward or rewind
- Change the channel
New Fire Sticks feature a smart channel guide button and quick-select app buttons to help make your user experience even better. All you have to do is press the guide button to access all your favorite content from your streaming services.
The quick-select app buttons allow you to access apps without navigating through annoying menu screens.
How to Use a Fire Stick With a Smart TV
Using an Amazon Fire Stick with your smart TV is easy to do. Don’t forget to put batteries in your Fire Stick remote before you start the setup process. The items you need to set up the Fire Stick should arrive in the box.
- Plug the Fire Stick into the HDMI port of your smart TV.
- Use the adapter to connect the Fire Stick to a power source.
- Connect your Fire Stick to your WiFi network.
- Select the correct HDMI input on your smart TV.
- Follow the on-screen instructions and download the appropriate software.
Any content you have purchased from Amazon will be available for you to use once you connect to the internet.
After you’ve completed the initial setup, you can sign in to your Amazon account and use your Fire Stick. The installation process will help you set up equipment control if you have additional devices, such as sound bars or speaker systems.
Do You Need a Smart TV to Use a Fire Stick?
You don’t need a Smart TV to use a Fire Stick. Fire Sticks are compatible with any TV with an HDMI port. You can also use a Fire Stick on computer monitors.
Actually, it makes even more sense to use a Fire Stick in a non-smart TV. This would essentially turn it into a smart TV.
Does a Fire Stick Need WiFi?
A Fire Stick needs WiFi. The Fire Stick menu will still work without an internet connection, but it won’t be able to access any streaming platforms. The Fire Stick doesn’t have an ethernet port, so it can’t connect to the internet with an ethernet cable.
Which Amazon Fire Stick Should You Choose?
The price of your fire stick depends on when and where you buy it. You can buy a Fire Stick for much less than a fully-fledged streaming box and there are no hidden costs or membership fees. Buying a Fire Stick secondhand is also an excellent option for saving extra money.
There are three Fire Stick models:
- Amazon Fire Stick Lite
- Amazon Fire Stick
- Amazon Fire Stick 4k
Let’s delve a little deeper into each model.
Amazon Fire Stick Lite
The Fire Stick Lite is a simplified version of the Fire Stick with a basic remote. It is the cheapest version of the Fire Stick with 8GB of storage.
The remote still features many of the same functions as the Fire Stick but with limited options. For example, the voice controls don’t allow you to turn the TV on and off.
Smart TV owners who want a 4k experience may find the Lite version less appealing. If you are happy with basic streaming then this is your option.
Amazon Fire Stick
The original Fire Stick is perfect for most smart TV owners looking to upgrade their viewing experience. Users can control more with their remote and integrate their Fire Stick into their smart home devices. However, if you have a 4K TV, you might feel like you’re not getting the most out of it.
Amazon Fire Stick 4K
If you have a 4K TV and want to get the best possible video and sound quality, you should pay a little extra for the Fire Stick 4K. This version of the Fire Stick is often on sale, so keep your eyes peeled for a deal. It pairs well with the Echo smart speaker, allowing you to control the TV with your voice.
Fire TV Cube
This technically isn’t a Fire Stick, but you should still know about it.
If you want to roll your Alexa Home Hub and Fire Stick into one, then the Fire TV Cube may be the best option. With 16GB of internal storage and a built-in speaker, the Fire TV Cube can control your household devices while you relax and watch TV simultaneously.
The Fire TV Cube also has more processing power, which means it can handle more demanding apps.
If you are a home entertainment fan, adding a fire stick to your smart TV setup could take it to the next level. Although it’s not essential, a fire stick will increase your viewing options and boost the speed of your TV.
Some of the benefits of having a Fire Stick are:
- Voice commands
- Custom interface
- Improved response rate
- Compatible with smart home technology
If your smart TV has limited apps and streaming options, a fire stick could be a great addition to your home entertainment system.
Jason is a home theater expert with over 10 years of experience in setting up home cinema rooms and systems. What started out as a hobby soon transformed him into an authority in the audio-visual field. He is passionate about providing readers with accurate and up-to-date information on the latest audiovisual technologies and their applications for home theaters. Read more about Jason.