Technological World for March 22, consumer tech: Amazon's new Fire televisions, art on your big screen

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Amazon’s just announced new Fire TVs, some of which turn your living room into an art gallery.

Amazon building out Fire TV lineup with new sizes and pricing

Amazon has been providing streaming video hardware since 2014, starting with USB sticks that you’d plug into your dumb television to make it smart. In 2021, the company started shipping televisions manufactured on their behalf with the software built in.

The business is strong enough that last year, Amazon upped the quality with the Omni QLED line of premium sets. Starting today, three new sizes – 43”, 50”, and 55” – join the 65” and 75” screens.

The 4K devices have quantum dot technology and support for high-dynamic range and Dolby Vision. Prices start at $600 and top out at $1,500.

Amazon has also released a new, budget line, the 2-series, which comes in two sizes, 32” ($270) and 40” ($340). The former is limited to 720p resolution, while the latter gets to true HD with a 1080p picture. Both sets have high-dynamic range ability.

This is all in addition to the Omni UHD and 4-Series lines from Amazon.

Why your television makes for a nice frame for streaming art

One of the features of Amazon’s Omni QLED televisions is an “ambient experience”, which refers to how the screen gets used when you’re not actively watching something.

With the built-in “presence sensor”, the hardware knows when a person is in the room, and it can display widgets with information like appointments and the weather. You can also leave a sticky note on the display with messages for others in your household.

And, just like LG has “gallery mode” and Samsung has an entire television, the Frame designed around displaying art, the Omni QLED will show you art, too.

The collection includes some 1,700 images, including from masters like Degas, Van Gogh, Renoir, and Seurat. Want to know the name of the art you’re seeing and who painted it? Just ask Alexa.

And in collaboration with artist Sam Stubblefield, there’s a dynamic art experience coming to the Omni QLED that provides moving images that are created based on an algorithm that considers location data like sunrise, wind speed and direction, and temperature.


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