Amazon Claims Over 30 Million Fire TV Users

Posted on January 10, 2019 by Paul Thurrott in Amazon, Music + Videos, Smart Home with 9 Comments

Amazon said this week that there are now well over 30 million active users of its Fire TV family of living room video streaming boxes. That number outstrips the 27 million figure that Roku provided earlier this week.

The “well over” 30 million figure comes courtesy of an interview, in this case with CNET. That seems to be the way that Amazon releases hard numbers now: Earlier this week, an executive from the e-retailing giant told another publication that there are over 100 million Alexa-powered smart devices out in the world.

According to CNET, that installed base “may” put Amazon in the leadership position when it comes to this somewhat small—at least compared to platforms like PCs, smartphones, tablets, and digital assistants—market for living room set-top boxes. But I think it’s far more likely that various smart TV platforms outstrip this number. And that it’s inarguably more important to measure the usage in services like Netflix and Hulu than the count just one of the device types on which they are accessed. After all, moving between streaming boxes is not very difficult.

Or, as CNET puts it, the market for video streaming devices is “exploding,” with the number of households with a streaming player quadrupling in the last five years. To address this need, Amazon intends to partner on more Fire TV-based smart TVs—following Roku’s lead—and improving its integration with Alexa, Amazon’s voice assistant.

“There are things where voice is not going to be as fast [as using a remote] and there are things with voice where it’s not even going to be in the same ballpark,” an Amazon executive told CNET. “And we’re just going to keep working on making those parts great.”

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Comments (9)

9 responses to “Amazon Claims Over 30 Million Fire TV Users”

  1. mmcpher

    I have had a variety of streaming devices, including the original and the latest itterations of Amazon Fire TV, a Roku, a Roku TV, a Samsung and LG smart TV, an Apple TV thingy, even the Microsoft device, and a Bluray DVD player with built in streaming. . . . FWIW, streaming has come a long way and the latest Amazon Fire TV device the furthest, as it is the quickest, smoothest, easiest and most stable option for us, and by a surprisingly large margin. YVMV.

  2. Bats

    I don't understand that Cnet remark. Being that there are only 4 prominent players in the race, I think that they are automatically in *A* leadership position and not *THE* leadership position. Without any form of partnership from Google, the best streaming platform (still) has to be Roku. 

    I encounter several people a day (on the CordCutterNews Facebook Group) asking the question "Can I play YoutubeTV on a Fire player?" Obviously NO, which is too bad because YouTube TV is arguably the best tv service in the market right now. Combine that with Philo and it's a reliable streaming & unlimited DVR powerhouse that rivals DirecTV NOW, Hulu, etc.... These disappointed Amazon Fire TV users, end up commenting how they went and bought the cheap Roku Express instead. 

    The way I see it, it's a race for second place right now.. Amazon needs Google. Amazon, in fact should be scared of Google. The Android TV Platform is really, really that good. If Google can just focus on getting more partners to build more native network apps for the platform, we are talking about an instant challenge to Roku. Think about it all those Google Homes working and operating with the Android TV, which doubles as a Chromecast.....we are not only talking smart home, but fun home as well.

  3. Chris_Kez

    I'm surprised the Fire TV numbers aren't higher given their low cost, their prominent placement on the home page of the largest e-commerce site and the fact that Amazon even put marketing dollars behind this.

    • lvthunder

      In reply to Chris_Kez:

      Me too. I was also surprised at the Roku numbers as well. I thought this market was a lot larger. I wish we new the Apple TV numbers.

    • Skolvikings

      In reply to Chris_Kez:

      Then again, that number is like 1 in 10 Americans, which is actually a pretty large number.

    • Trickyd

      In reply to Chris_Kez:

      I'm surprised it's that high , when google fell out with Amazon and stopped youtube working on FireTV/Sticks our household binned 3 Fire sticks overnight and replaced with Roku sticks/Smart TV's , and 18 months on we are 100% Smart TV's. Assuming most Youtube users did the same it only leaves Amazon with the non-youtube using population who happen to have an ancient non-smart TV.

  4. m_p_w_84

    I would say that’s a very small number considering the stick’s at $20 are virtually free

  5. Tony Barrett

    I don't think that's very impressive at all to be honest - not for the amount of time they've been on sale. I bought a first gen FireTV stick (not a good device!), and a second gen FireTV (better, but no HDR). Both have been relegated to very minor roles now, and a Shield has taken over main streaming duties. We do subscribe to both Netflix and Prime Video, but I'd say streaming is about 95% Netflix/5% Prime. We also have Roku's, and most of the streaming on them is Netflix or iPlayer.

    I was briefly considering a FireTV Cube, but after finding out it's pretty much just a FireTV with Alexa bolted on (with the main focus being Alexa), I lost interest. Outside of the US, the FireTV is pretty limited, and I actually prefer the new Shield Android TV UI to the FireTV now.