Amazon has made a flurry of announcements tied to its Fire TV OTT ecosystem, which it said now has 37 million active users.
Making its announcement from the Berlin’s Internationale Funkausstellung event (aka “IFA), Amazon announced more than 20 new Fire TV devices, as well as retail and manufacturing partnerships in Europe, in which it seeks to expand.
Among the highlights from the broad-reaching announcement, Amazon is partnering with Grundig to produce the first Fire TV Edition smart TV with far-field voice control for customers in Germany and Austria. In the same region, as well as in the UK, Amazon is joining forces with Dixons Carphone and MediaMarktSaturn to sell Fire TV-powered smart TVs.
Amazon is also teaming with Anger Innovations to introduce a Fire TV-powered sound bar in Europe and North America.
The online retail giant is also launching a $120, upgraded, far-field-enabled Fire TV Cube in the U.S. Canada, the UK, Germany and Japan.
“Fire TV Cube was the first hands-free streaming media player powered by Alexa, and since launching last year we have gathered a wealth of feedback from customers about how they use voice in the living room,” said Marc Whitten, VP of Amazon Fire TV. “Over the past year, we have continued to expand and advance the Fire TV Cube experience based on this feedback with dozens of new features including multi-room music, follow-up mode and Alexa communications. These key learnings carried over and guided the development of the second-generation Fire TV Cube, and we are excited to introduce this new-and-improved experience to customers around the world.”
Together, Amazon and Roku power the majority of connected TVs and connected TV devices globally. As both companies embark on quests to expand relatively nascent positions internationally, research companies generally favor Roku as being the more widely distributed OTT ecosystem.
However, in their outreach today, Amazon reps noted that Fire TV “continues to be the #1 streaming media player in the US, UK, Germany, India, and Japan.”