Amazon is expanding its free offerings through the launch of a selection of ‘Fire TV Channels’ on Fire TV devices. These new channels are the latest example of the importance of free, supported TV, otherwise known as FAST, and further evidence of Amazon’s venturing into the ‘with ads’ market.
It was only earlier today when Amazon confirmed that over the course of this year more than 100 Amazon Originals will make their way from the paid Prime Video service to the free Freevee service. These shows won’t disappear from Prime Video, but they will be available to watch for free and without the need for a Prime membership.
Now, Amazon has confirmed the launch of its FAST Fire TV Channels hub. Basically, Fire TV device owners will now begin to see a lot more linear channels available on the Fire TV home screen. Channels which they can immediately tune in to and start watching.
Similar to how FAST channels work on other streaming services, Fire TV Channels are designed to highlight various categories, genres, or themes. For example, there will be channels specifically covering food and cooking, sports highlights, and gaming videos, among other topics.
It is worth noting that unlike some other services, Amazon appears to be focusing its FAST content on both short and long-form video content. In other words, Fire TV users will also see dedicated Fire TV Channels for topics like trending trailers and viral videos, which typically will be showing much shorter videos than a show episode or movie.
The new Fire TV Channels were announced as the 2023 IAB NewFronts event and you can check out the trailer below to get a better sense of what’s on offer.
For those interested in giving the expanded Fire TV Channels FAST experience a try, the new channels are rolling out to devices this week. From the Home screen, navigate to the ‘Free’ tab and then look for the Fire TV Channels content in the second row.
To further improve the Fire TV Channels experience, Amazon says that “Fire TV will bring all of these FAST categories together into a single, easy-to-navigate service with the launch of the Fire TV Channels destination” later in the year.