A new premium remote for Amazon’s Fire TV devices has been announced this week, with two highly-requested features – a backlight and a remote finder, along with a few other new additions.
The new remote, called Alexa Voice Remote Pro was introduced in Amazon’s devices event held on Wednesday, where a new 3rd generation Fire TV Cube was also announced.
The Pro remote won’t come bundled with existing Fire TV devices (at least for now), and will have to be purchased separately (see below for the full list of compatible devices).
And while you can’t get it in your hands YET, users in the UK won’t have to wait too long, as the new remote is expected to reach our side of the pond on November 16, 2022 – and you can already pre-order it.
Amazon’s Fire TV streaming devices are quite popular in the UK, dating back to the launch of the first Fire TV box, back in 2014.
At this point, according to Amazon, the Fire TV is the number one streaming media device in the UK.
The last time we saw a brand new remote for the Fire TV was back in 2021, when app shortcut buttons were added to it.
Alexa Voice Remote Pro – What’s New?
The new Pro remote has several features, some of which were long-requested by users:
How many times have you lost the tiny Fire TV remote somewhere in the house, due to the cat hiding it behind the sofa?
Taking a page from Roku’s Voice Remote Pro (which unfortunately isn’t available in the UK), the new Alexa Voice Remote Pro finally adds a remote finder feature.
The finder can be activated in one of two ways – either press a button on your Fire TV mobile phone app, or say to Alexa – if you own an Alexa/Echo device – “Alexa, find my remote”.
At that point, Alexa Voice Remote Pro’s built-in speaker will start beeping, helping you track it in the room.
Note that for the Remote Finder function to work, your Fire TV device needs to be powered on – therefore try not to lose that one too.
Thanks to the remote’s motion detection sensor, its buttons will now light up when you pick it up.
This was another highly-requested feature, and I’m a big fan of it on Sky Glass’ remote – it’s very helpful when you’re watching TV late at night.
We’ve had app shortcut buttons on Fire TV remotes since 2021, leading to apps like Netflix and Prime Video – but there was never an easy way to change the shortcuts on these buttons (as Amazon reportedly gets paid for those buttons).
On the Pro remote, you still can’t change the default shortcuts – but there are now two new customisable buttons.
So you can personalise the remote by programming these buttons to create one-touch shortcuts to favourite apps, channels, and anything that Alexa can do.
You can, for example, program a button to have Alexa dim your smart lights. Or you can even program a button to start a full Alexa routine, for a collection of actions that take place all at once.
More New Buttons
The new Alexa Voice Remote Pro also adds a dedicated headphone button.
Don’t get too excited though – there’s no headphone jack on the new remote, and there’s nothing similar to Roku’s Private Listening mode (that lets you route the TV’s audio to your earphones via the Roku mobile app).
Instead, the headphone button simply opens up the Bluetooth menu on the Fire TV, where you can pair (or unpair) compatible Bluetooth headphones, and listen to the Fire TV through those.
In addition, there’s a new Channels Up/Down button for live channels (something that’s still quite lacking on Fire TV in the UK), as well as a new dedicated Settings button.
How Can I Get The New Alexa Voice Remote Pro
The new premium remote is compatible with most Fire TV devices sold in the UK, except for the 1st/2nd generation Fire TV boxes and the 1st generation Fire TV Stick. Therefore, it works with:
- Fire TV Cube (3rd Generation)
- Fire TV Cube (2nd Generation)
- Fire TV Stick 4K Max
- Fire TV Stick 4K
- Fire TV Stick (3rd Generation)
- Fire TV Stick (2nd Generation)
- Fire TV Stick Lite
- Fire TV (3rd Generation, Pendant Design)
And with several Smart TVs that have Fire TV built-in:
- JVC 4K Smart TV – Fire TV
- JVC 4K Smart TV with Freeview Play – Fire TV
- JVC HD – Fire TV
- Bush 4K – Fire TV
- Technika 4K – Fire TV
- Ferguson 2K – Fire TV
- Polaroid 4K – Fire TV
Note however that the Alexa Voice Remote Pro does not feature the four coloured buttons (red, green, yellow, and blue) that are found on other Smart TV remotes, and are normally used for interactive services on platforms such as BBC iPlayer.
The Alexa Voice Remote Pro can be pre-ordered on Amazon for £34.99, with an expected shipping date of November 16, 2022.