Amazon Fire TV Cube Review 2021

Amazon's high-end Fire TV Cube streaming device features 4K and robust Alexa support—read all about it in our expert review.

Price: $79.99
Video: 4K, HDR, HDR10+, Dolby Vision
Audio: 5.1. + 7.1 Dolby Atmos surround sound, 2.0 stereo
Standout feature: Alexa voice command

Product prices and availability are accurate as of post date and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon.com at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product. CableTV.com utilizes paid Amazon links.

Is Amazon Fire TV Cube any good?

The Fire TV Cube is the full-featured, bigger/squarer brother to Amazon’s Fire TV Sticks. The Fire TV Cube is also one of the most futuristic and feature-rich streamers we’ve reviewed on CableTV.com, and one of the first to challenge our love for the Roku Ultra (that’s a big deal around here).

It’s a bit more expensive than most other streaming devices—except for the Apple TV 4K, because Apple—but Amazon Fire TV Cube could be worth it, especially if you’re into all things hands-free. The Cube’s Alexa voice command extends beyond just picking a show or turning up the volume: set up correctly, it can control your entire entertainment system.

Amazon Fire TV Cube pros and cons

Pros

  • Alexa voice command
  • 4K, HDR, HDR10+, Dolby Vision video
  • Smart home control

Cons

  • Limited manual remote
  • More expensive price tag
  • Larger than most devices

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Amazon Fire TV Cube deals and promotions

Maybe when Amazon Prime Day, Black Friday, or Cyber Monday roll around again, we’ll see even lower price breaks on the Fire TV Cube (which is already cheap at $79.99). Until then, we’ll be on the lookout for sweet deals.

Amazon Fire TV Cube models

Device Price Video Audio Details
Fire TV Cube $79.99/mo. 1080p, 4K, HDR, HDR10+, Dolby Vision 5.1. + 7.1 Dolby Atmos surround sound, 2.0 stereo View on Amazon

Data effective as of post date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

The single model of Amazon Fire TV Cube is a sleek black box with a blue “on” indicator strip across the top and minimal buttons and inputs (four apiece). Unlike the Fire TV Stick, the Cube is designed to be noticed, striking a more imposing presence than Roku’s flat Ultra box.

But, like Roku, Fire TV Cube is a killer streaming device that delivers fantastic video, audio, and a full selection of popular apps—and it’s not overly skewed toward Amazon’s Prime Video. The Cube is more brand-neutral in its searches and recommendations than the Stick, which tends to be an “All Amazon! All the time!” promo machine. The Cube knows how to chill.

Amazon Fire TV Cube vs. the competition

Device Price Video Audio Details
Amazon Fire TV Cube $79.99 1080p, 4K, HDR, HDR10+, Dolby Vision Digital stereo, DTS Digital Surround, Dolby Atmos View on Amazon
Roku Ultra $66.01 1080p, 4K, HDR, HDR10+, Dolby Vision Digital stereo, DTS Digital Surround, Dolby Atmos View on Amazon
Chromecast with Google TV $49.99 1080p, 4K, HDR, HDR10+, Dolby Vision Digital stereo, DTS Digital Surround, Dolby Atmos View on Google
Apple TV 4K $189.95 1080p, 4K, HDR, HDR10+, Dolby Vision Digital stereo, DTS Digital Surround, Dolby Atmos View on Amazon
NVIDIA Shield TV Pro 4K $199.99 1080p, 4K, HDR, HDR10+, Dolby Vision Digital stereo, DTS Digital Surround, Dolby Atmos View on Amazon

Data effective as of post date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

For proper comparison, the models above all feature 4K, HDR, and Dolby Vision resolution. The Fire TV Cube is a little pricier than the Roku Ultra and Chromecast with Google TV, but it also does a lot more that we’ll get to in a moment. Spoiler: it’s all about Alexa.

Amazon Fire TV Cube specs and features

The Amazon Fire TV Cube can control your TV, cable box, A/V receiver, and soundbar all through Alexa voice command. Even more impressive—or scary, depending on your sentient AI beliefs—Alexa and the Cube can run your entire smart home.

  • Price: $79.99
  • Size: 3.4” x 3.4” x 3.0”
  • Video: 1080p, 4K Ultra HD, HDR, HDR 10
  • Audio: Dolby Atmos, 7.1 + 5.1 surround sound; standard 2.0 stereo
  • Storage: 16 GB (internal)
  • Wi-Fi: Dual-band/dual-antenna 802.11a/b/g/n/ac
  • Remote: Alexa Voice Remote (included) or Fire TV app (download)

Amazon Fire TV Cube setup

Connecting a Fire TV Cube directly to a TV is easy and almost entirely automatic—especially if it’s a newer TV. Older models may require a few extra minutes and steps for system recognition. If you ordered the Cube from Amazon, it’ll even already be signed into your Prime account (again, convenient or scary—you decide).

From there, the Fire TV Cube’s setup wizard (What did we do before setup wizards? Read manuals? The horror. . .) will walk you through the processes for syncing up other components. One important step it leaves out, though, is a reminder to turn on the other devices’ HDMI CEC (consumer electronics control). Many newer devices come CEC-ready, but be sure to check first.

As with any device setup, we recommend using the Fire TV Cube’s included AC adaptor rather than running from your TV’s USB power, which turns on and off with the TV. Also, we prefer the direct internet connection of an Ethernet cable to Wi-Fi, but we get the aversion to cluttering your entertainment-center wires. You do you.

Included equipment

  • Fire TV Cube
  • Quick Start Guide
  • Alexa Voice Remote
  • USB power cable
  • AC power adaptor
  • IR extender cable
  • Ethernet adaptor
  • 2 AAA batteries

Equipment you’ll need

  • TV with HDMI port
  • Wi-Fi network or Ethernet internet port

On-demand and live tv streaming apps

With some exceptions, the Fire TV Cube offers almost every TV app that the other most-popular streaming devices do—including classic YouTube and live streaming YouTube TV. Of course, Prime Video is promoted, but less aggressively than with the Fire TV Stick.

Amazon Fire TV Cube on-demand and live TV streaming apps (partial list):

  • Prime Video
  • Netflix
  • Hulu
  • Hulu + Live TV
  • YouTube
  • YouTube TV
  • Sling TV
  • fuboTV
  • DIRECTV STREAM
  • Peacock
  • Disney+
  • HBO Max
  • SHOWTIME
  • STARZ
  • EPIX
  • Paramount+
  • ESPN+
  • Philo
  • Discovery+
  • Pluto TV

Entertainment apps

Besides streaming TV, Amazon Fire TV Cube also supports several entertainment, music, and gaming apps. For gaming, we’d advise getting a separate gaming controller; the included TV remote control doesn’t quite cut it.

Amazon Fire TV Cube entertainment apps (partial list):

  • Crossy Road
  • Minecraft
  • Final Fantasy VI
  • Crazy Taxi
  • Lego DC Mighty Micros
  • PBA Bowling Challenge
  • Castle of Illusion
  • Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
  • Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
  • Sega Classics
  • Poker Championship
  • Twitch
  • Amazon Music
  • Spotify
  • Pandora
  • Tidal
  • Sirius XM
  • NPR One

Home screen and channel guide

Ask Alexa to find Netflix’s aliens-vs.-earth thriller Another Life, and it’ll take you directly to Netflix. That simple process wouldn’t normally be a big deal, unless you’ve used previous versions of Fire TV, like the Stick, which would typically serve up Prime Video sci-fi while actively avoiding Netflix.

Amazon has curbed its self-promotional urges with the Cube, allowing the competition equal time—smart move. The home screen will even display recommendations from non-Prime Video apps based on your viewing history. As much as we love Roku, the Ultra doesn’t even do that . . . we may have a crush on the Cube.

Also, while we appreciate the simple navigation of Roku, Fire TV Cube’s interface is more visually appealing and active. Add the Echo-in-widescreen capabilities of Alexa, wherein you can call up weather reports, traffic conditions, news headlines, security cams, and music on a whim, and we’re falling even harder for the Fire TV Cube.

Amazon Prime Video Originals Menu

Remote control

Alexa is great and all, but the Fire TV Cube still comes with a good ole button remote—not that it’s loaded with mind-blowing features. Amazon went big with the Cube but kept the clicker simple.

Starting at the top with a power button and an Alexa mic button, there’s also a navigation wheel (with Select command inside). Then Back, Home, Menu, Fast-Forward, Play/Pause, Rewind, and Mute, followed by a volume up/down rocker. That’s it.

Those who prefer not to talk to their electronics might prefer a beefier remote, but this navigates the Cube nicely. If you want a more feature-rich remote in your hands, there’s also the Fire TV app for Android and iOS, but its performance isn’t quite on-par with Fire TV Cube’s system.

Compatible devices

Any TV with an HDMI port will work with the Fire TV Cube, as will most cable/satellite boxes, A/V receivers, and soundbars. It can also control compatible smart home functions like locks, lights, thermostats, and more via Alexa.

Fire TV Cube won’t, however, work with Blu-ray/DVD players, projectors, or universal remotes. Alexa hasn’t made your fingers completely obsolete . . . yet.

Final take: Fire TV Cube + Alexa = streaming bliss

If you want to control not only your TV and entertainment center, but also your entire household through your voice alone, Amazon Fire TV Cube is a magical tool. But it’s also just an excellent straight-up TV streamer.

It’s on the pricier end of the streaming device spectrum, but we don’t see the Fire TV Cube becoming outdated anytime soon—you’ll get your money’s worth, in both performance and longevity. If you’re already in a committed relationship with Alexa, it’s even better.

Our one knock against the Fire TV Cube: Alexa’s voice recognition capabilities, while good, are still no match for Google’s. This is just a minor issue, as we expect both will eventually surpass humans (cue Terminator theme).

Roku pioneered the streaming device; Amazon has upped the game dramatically with the Cube. Coming from a reviews team that bleeds Roku purple, that’s high praise. We suggest taking it for a spin yourself.

Amazon Fire TV Cube FAQ

Does Amazon Fire TV Cube have HBO Max?

HBO Max and HBO are no longer available as Prime Video channels, but the standalone HBO Max app is available on all Fire TV devices, including the Fire TV Cube.

Is there a monthly fee for Amazon Fire TV Cube?

There is no monthly fee to use the Amazon Fire TV Cube, or any other Fire TV Devices, just a one-time device purchase fee.

Can I watch regular TV on Amazon Fire TV Cube?

You can watch live streaming TV through apps like YouTube TV, Hulu + Live TV, and Sling TV, through Amazon Fire TV Cube and other Fire TV devices.

Methodology

Our experts employed hundreds of hours of hands-on testing and comparing stats, rating the Amazon Fire TV Cube streaming device on bang for your buck, reliability, features, and customer satisfaction. For more information on our methodology, check out our How We Rank page.

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