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Web browsers on the Fire TV make second screens a thing of the past

Amazon Fire TV with Alexa integration
Image used with permission by copyright holder
The Amazon Fire TV is one of our favorite streaming devices out there. Not only does it take full advantage of your Amazon Prime membership, but it provides hundreds of thousands of movies and TV episodes to stream, and makes a decent casual gaming system, to boot. As of Wednesday, December 20, that range of functionality just got better.

Thanks to a recent update, web browsing is now available on the Fire TV. We’re not talking some watered-down experience where you can only visit a handful of pre-determined sites, either, but rather a full web experience with Firefox and Silk web browsers.

Firefox has been a popular alternative web browser since it released in 2002, and users familiar with the interface will find that the Fire TV version of the browser includes just about every feature of the desktop and mobile versions, including a search bar and bookmarks.

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In the official press release for the announcement, Mozilla Firefox’s Senior Vice President Mark Mayo said “Firefox has always been about bringing the web directly to people no matter what device they’re using. Starting today, we will be able to expand the already great Fire TV experience by enabling viewers to surface a multitude of web content — including videos — through Firefox.”

That last line about watching videos is an interesting one, considering Amazon and Google are currently in a spat over the future of the uber-popular video platform’s future on Amazon products like the Echo and Fire TV. For now, at least, watching through Firefox is a possibility.

The other internet browsing option, Amazon’s own web browser, Silk, is also available. Amazon has tailored the Silk interface to take advantage of the Fire TV’s remote. You can use the built-in microphone on your Fire TV remote to search the web, and website navigation has been mapped to the remote’s buttons. Like other web browsers, the Silk homepage features a curated selection of popular websites and your own bookmarked pages for quick access.

Both Firefox and Silk are available in the Amazon app store now, and once downloaded, you can begin browsing the web immediately. As for specific geographic availability, Marc Whitten, vice president of Amazon’s Fire TV and Appstore said “We’re excited to bring web browsing to customers on every Fire TV device in every country where they’re sold.”

After you check your social media feeds and catch up on the latest breaking news on the new web browsers, be sure to check out the best Amazon Prime movies to stream on your Fire TV.

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