Amazon Fire TV just got a big upgrade for all the cord-cutters out there. One of the cons of giving up cable in favor of streaming platforms is that you miss out on live TV. But Amazon’s Fire TV platform is expanding to give its customers an old taste of live television again, with several key new services: YouTube TV, Sling TV, and Hulu’s live TV offering.
The Verge reports that the Amazon Fire TV Live selection has gotten a whole lot bigger. The company’s Fire TV platform has expanded its live TV integration to include YouTube TV, Sling TV, and Hulu’s live TV feature, joining previously available services like Pluto TV and Prime Video Channels. It’s not exactly the same as flipping through channels, but it’s pretty close.
Amazon Fire TV has released a video showing how this new integration works, with live content from each provider appearing in Fire TV’s live discovery features. This includes a Live tab, On Now rows, and a Channel Guide.
Amazon already offered Sling TV, YouTube TV, and Hulu’s live TV service on Fire TV through existing apps, but this is the first time they’re included in the “live TV” tab. While this seems like fairly minuscule stuff, it makes navigation of Amazon Fire TV a little easier and allows greater choices for their customers. Amazon controls nearly 20% of the share of viewing time, according to the analytical firm Conviva, only second to Roku.
It’s a win-win situation for both sides. Sling, YouTube, and Hulu can likely now enjoy an influx of more customers now that the access is easier. And for Amazon, being able to offer live integrations means that customers will stay inside the Fire TV ecosystem instead of switching to those company’s separate apps. Amazon states that that the Live Tab is the second most-visited part of the Fire TV app after the home screen, with total time spent by people watching live TV via live-streaming apps on Fire TV more than doubling since the live TV discovery integration launched,
“We believe the future of connected TV is one that brings live content forward, simplifies the streaming and OTT landscape, and enables customers to discover the programs they want to watch with ease,” Sandeep Gupta, vice president of Fire TV, said in a statement.
Sling TV’s integration into Fire TV’s live discovery features began rolling out earlier this year, YouTube TV began earlier this week, and Hulu will roll out over the next few weeks.
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