Amazon Launches New Fire TV Stick For International Customers

Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is introducing its streaming hardware to more international users. Users can now order the Amazon Fire TV Stick Basic Edition in 100 nations around the world, including Canada, France, Italy, and Spain. The small streaming media player connects to an HDTV’s HDMI port and offers access to streaming services like Amazon Video, Netflix, Hulu, and YouTube in no time. The stick also gives users access to various apps, music, and games.

The Fire TV Stick Basic Edition comes with quad-core processor, 1GB of memory, and 8GB of storage. It also offers support for Dolby Audio and provides 1080p streaming, according to Amazon. Customers can set their default language to Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, French, Italian, German, or English.

The new offering appears to be the same as the $40 Fire TV Stick currently sold in the US. However, the US version comes with an Alexa remote that can operate with voice commands, while the Basic Edition just has a basic remote. The stripped down Fire TV Stick doesn’t work in 4K, so those users will need the $70 Fire TV dongle which is currently available in Europe in the UK and Germany.

Amazon’s Prime Video service is available in 200 countries around the world as of last December. Amazon is investing billions to create content for the service which offers access to “thousands of movies, TV shows, apps, and games,” according to the company. Prime Video is free with an Amazon Prime membership that cost $99 annually or about $3 per month as a standalone service.

For many in Europe, streaming Amazon Prime is spotty unless the user has a Chromecast, set-top box, or TV that supports it. Amazon hopes that making it easier to stream content will motivate more folks to subscribe to Prime or Prime Video. The new stripped-down Fire TV Stick is priced the same as a Chromecast dongle. Amazon Fire TV Vice President Marc Whitten said in a statement, “This makes streaming content from apps like Prime Video fast and easy and we can’t wait to hear what customers think.”

Amazon’s Fire TV Stick With Alexa Voice Remote launched in the US in October 2016 before expanding to the UK, Germany, and Japan this April. Amazon also recently introduced a new Fire TV, which supports 4K Ultra HD and High Dynamic Range content. That device is available for pre-order now and slated to begin shipping on Oct. 25 for customers in the US.

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