Amazon Fire TV owners Stateside have been able to control their streaming sticks using their Echo speakers for a while now - and now the extremely useful feature has gone live for UK users too.
What this means is that, if you've got an Echo Dot, Echo Spot or any other Echo speaker in the same room as the television you've got your Fire TV plugged in to, then you've now got the option to control your viewing - or access your security camera feeds - using just your voice; there's no need to pick up that remote control.
Essential reading: Ultimate guide to Amazon Alexa
Plus, if your TV supports HDMI-CEC, you'll also be able to power it on from standby simply by saying a Fire TV command such as, "Alexa, open Netflix".
Controlling Fire TV using your Echo speaker
It's super simple to get started. In fact, if you've only got one Fire TV device then by simply using a compatible command, you'll automatically pair an Echo device to it.
For example, if you've got an Echo Dot in your living room and you say, "Alexa, watch Midsomer Murders," then your Dot instantly pair up with the only Fire TV it can find in your Alexa account. You can only have one Fire TV paired to each Echo speaker - but you can have multiple Echos synced up with one Fire TV; handy if you've got a pair of Echo speakers either side of your couch, for example.
If you do have more than one Fire TV then you'll need to jump into the Alexa app to pair your devices:
- Select 'Music, Video, & Books'
- Choose your Fire TV
- Check the boxes of the Echo(s) that you want to control it
One interesting note is, while you can fire up a smart home security camera feed (from a Nest Cam, for example) by saying, "Alexa, show me the [room name]", if your paired Echo device has a screen - i.e. is a Show or Spot - that device will default as the playback device for that command.
Far-field control of Fire TV is works on all generations of Fire TV and Fire TV Stick and all models of Echo speaker can be paired up.
Echo Fire TV commands
Once synced up you'll have access to an absolute wealth of new Alexa commands, mostly focused on streaming TV, obviously - but there's also the security camera access we've already mentioned.
Here's some top Fire TV Alexa commands to try out. The results you will get on screen will depend what streaming apps you've installed on your Fire TV.
"Alexa, watch [movie title]”
"Alexa, fast forward [x] minutes"
"Alexa, rewind [x] seconds."
"Alexa, next / next Episode."
"Alexa, turn it down on Fire TV."
"Alexa, show me movies with [actor's name]"
"Alexa, open Netflix”
"Alexa, show me popular show on [app]"
"Alexa, go to [channel / network] on [app]."