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How to set up an Amazon Fire Stick

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Amazon’s Fire Stick is one of the hottest bits of TV tech you can get your hands on. Plug one into your telly, and you’ll transform it into a smart TV. Which means you can stream your favourite shows, play games, listen to music, and browse the web - all in one place! Nice.

How do you get started though? Well, sit back and relax. Because we’re here to be your TV guides…

How to set up an Amazon Fire Stick

Unboxing and first steps

Got everything out of the box? Great. Here’s how to set up a Fire Stick:

  1. Put the Fire Stick into an HDMI port on your TV.

  2. Plug in the power adapter.

  3. Switch on your telly and pick the HDMI input the Stick is using.

  4. Follow the prompts on the screen to set up your Amazon account, language, and region.

Connecting to Wi-Fi and registering your Fire Stick

Now we need to hook it up to your Wi-Fi network. Here’s how to connect a Fire Stick to it:

  1. Head to ‘Settings’ and select ‘Network’ to find and connect to your Wi-Fi.

  2. Once you’re all connected, you’ll need to register the Fire Stick with your Amazon account.

  3. Registering it means you can access all of your content and any preferences you’ve got.

Personalising your Fire Stick

Make your Fire Stick your own and switch up some settings:

  1. Customise your home screen with apps you like to use. And remove the ones you don’t!

  2. Will the kids be watching too? Set up parental controls so they don’t see anything they shouldn’t.

  3. Tweak your display and audio settings to make movie night even more epic.

Extra privacy and security

Keep your internet connection under wraps and stop those pesky third parties from tracking you online…

  • Think about using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) for another layer of privacy.

  • You don’t have to be a computer genius to set one up. Install a VPN app from the Amazon Appstore for some secure streaming.

Improving streaming quality

If your favourite shows look terrible – or they just won’t load – it’s not going be much fun watching them. But it’s pretty easy to avoid being left on standby…

  • A strong, speedy Wi-Fi connection makes everything you’re streaming way smoother. If it’s weak and slow, there’ll be a whole lot of buffering and stuttering. You can check your internet speeds using the Which? Broadband speed test. Not liking those numbers? You might have to upgrade your internet plan!

  • If you can, put your Wi-Fi router as close to the Fire Stick as possible. The less walls your signal has to travel through, the better.

  • Change the video settings in each streaming app. It might be that 1080p video runs better for you than 4K does.

Which Fire Stick is right for you?

If you haven’t got yourself a Fire Stick yet, first, you’re missing out. And second, here’s a handy side-by-side comparison to help you fix that…

Specifications Fire TV Stick Fire TV Stick Lite Fire TV Stick 4K Fire TV Stick 4K Max
Video quality 1080p and 720p (up to 60 fps)  1080p and 720p (up to 60 fps) 4K, 1080p and 720p (up to 60 fps) 4K, 1080p and 720p (up to 60 fps)
Audio quality Dolby Atmos  HDMI passthrough (Dolby-encoded audio)  Dolby Atmos Dolby Atmos 
Connectivity  Bluetooth 5.0, Dual-band Wi-Fi  Bluetooth 5.0, Dual-band Wi-Fi  Bluetooth 5.0, Dual-band Wi-Fi Bluetooth 5.0, Dual-band Wi-Fi with Wi-Fi 6 support
Alexa remote  3rd Gen, TV controls  2nd Gen, no TV controls  3rd Gen, TV controls  3rd Gen, TV controls 
Storage  8GB  8GB  8GB  8GB
Memory  1GB  1GB 1.5GB  2GB
Processor Quad-core CPU 1.7GHz, GPU 650MHz  Quad-core CPU 1.7GHz, GPU 650MHz Quad-core CPU 1.7GHz, GPU 650 MHz  Quad-core CPU 1.8 GHz, GPU 750MHz
Picture-in-picture mode N/A N/A  Yes  Yes 


Why is my Fire Stick not pairing?

If your Fire Stick won’t spark into life, try this:

  • Make sure the remote has some fresh batteries in it.

  • Is there a clear line of sight between your remote and the Fire Stick? If there isn’t, get rid of anything that’s in the way.

  • Restart your Fire Stick by unplugging it and plugging it back in. It might be the oldest tech trick out there, but sometimes that’s all you need to do!

How do I pair my new Fire Stick remote without the old one?

If you want to pair a new remote, here’s what you’ll have to do:

  1. Hold down the Home button for ten seconds.

  2. Follow the step-by-step tips on-screen to connect the remote.

How do I pair my Amazon Fire Stick to Wi-Fi without a remote?

Lost your remote down the back of the sofa? Here’s a quick workaround…

  1. Fire up the Fire TV app on your smartphone.

  2. Connect your phone to the same Wi-Fi network as the Fire Stick.

  3. Open up the app, find your Fire Stick and follow the on-screen instructions.

So, now that you’ve got your Amazon Fire Stick working, let’s make sure the rest of your living room is ready for action! Get your telly in the best spot with a guide to wall mounting your TV. And if you’re thinking about upgrading yours, here are the best new TVs at CES 2024.

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