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New Amazon Fire TV Omni QLED displays art, senses your presence

Amazon held its big September hardware event today and saved the best for last, as TV enthusiasts might say, with an update to its latest TV lineup. The Fire TV Omni QLED Series features improved picture quality and a motion-sensing “ambient” experience that can trigger a whole range of new on-screen features.

Upping the ante from the original Omni series’ LED panels, the new Omni QLEDs now include Quantum Dot technology for better brightness and color, plus full-array local dimming for improved contrast, as well as support for Dolby Vision IQ that senses the ambient light in the room and adjusts the screen brightness accordingly. Amazon’s new TVs also add HDR10+ Adaptive support, as well as Auto Low Latency mode and Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) for gamers.

Fire TV Omni QLED Series with widgets.

The new 4K TVs, which are available for pre-order in 65-inch ($800) and 75-inch ($1,100) sizes, are an evolution from Amazon’s popular self-branded TVs that run the same Fire TV OS as their streaming device counterparts, and offer built-in microphones for interacting with Alexa to control many features with your voice (existing Omni Fire TVs do this as well).

The new Omni QLED TVs, however, also feature what Amazon is calling the “Ambient Experience,” which aims to turn your TV into a more functional living room tool even when you’re not using it to stream movies and TV shows. In this mode, you can do things like add artwork from a library of more than 1,500 pieces from the , essentially turning the screen into a digital painting, not unlike Samsung’s Frame TV.

“When not streaming, the Omni QLED Series uses its built-in presence sensors to detect when a person enters the room and switches to the beautiful and informative Ambient Experience,” the Amazon press release says.

Artwork displayed on the new Amazon Fire TV Omni QLED television.

When someone enters the room, the TV can also automatically display helpful information in the form of Alexa-powered widgets, including weather, calendars, reminders, and even sticky notes you can leave for family. You can also use the TV to control smart home devices and it can be customized using Alexa voice commands. The widgets are exclusive to these sets, Amazon told us in a press briefing after the event, due to how they’re tied in to the motion-sensing feature.

The new Omni QLED Series TVs are set to be delivered starting in late October.

Amazon also announced a whole range of new hardware devices at the event, including a new Alexa Voice Remote Pro (which is not included with the new Omni QLED TVs), a new third-gen Fire TV Cube, Amazon Ring and Blink security devices, a new Kindle Scribe, and much more. You can read about the details in our roundup of everything announced at the event.

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Derek Malcolm
Derek Malcolm is a Toronto-based technology journalist, editor, and content specialist whose work has appeared in…
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