The company also announced that TCL is going to be joining the Fire TV Soundbar fray, and announcing some new soundbars on its own. That is actually a big deal, considering that TCL had been all-in with Roku, before this.
Dolby Atmos, HDMI Switching, far-field microphones for Alexa & “device control” support coming
Amazon announced a number of features are going to be supported on the Amazon Fire TV soundbars later this year.
Of course, the big one is Dolby Atmos. That was really the biggest thing missing from the first round of Fire TV Soundbars that came out last year. But at last, that support will be here. Now it’s important to stress the “support” here. It means that they can use Dolby Atmos, but only if the hardware is there. Its partners will still need to work with Dolby to get it certified for Dolby Atmos.
HDMI switching is also a big deal, especially with all of these set-top boxes and gaming consoles on the market. Though the bigger deal is definitely far-field microphones for Alexa. This way Alexa can be always-listening, similar to the Fire TV Cube. This would allow you to use your voice to control the sound bar even when the TV is not on.
Fire TV is coming to more soundbars, and cars
As mentioned, Amazon has confirmed that TCL will be announcing some Fire TV soundbars. With their press conference happening later today at CES, it’s likely to happen then.
But, that’s not all for Fire TV. It is also going to be in select BMW and Chrysler vehicles starting in 2020.
One might wonder why Fire TV would be built into a vehicle. Especially since your eyes should be on the road when you’re driving. Well, Amazon is putting Fire TV into the seatbacks of these vehicles. So your kids can watch their shows on Amazon Prime Video or Netflix, during these long car rides.
While Amazon Fire TV has mostly been included with smart TVs so far, it looks like that’s going to be changing really soon. Amazon is already the number one streaming set-top box, and it’s looking to keep growing and keep that position.
However, Amazon does still have the small problem that is, Fire TV is only available in a handful of countries.