Amazon Fire TV adds sweet new features for free

Amazon Fire TV just got better, for free. Photo: Amazon

Amazon Fire TV just got better, for free. Photo: Amazon

Apple is trying to make Apple TV more appealing than ever with a lower price tag and HBO Now exclusivity, but Amazon announced today that it’s bringing new features to its set top box too, and they won’t cost customers a cent.

Expandable USB storage, private listening via for wireless headphones, and hotel Wi-Fi support are being added to Amazon’s TV devices. The new features will rollout to customers over the coming weeks as a free, over-the-air software update for the Fire TV and Fire TV Stick.

The list of new features includes the following:

Expandable USB storage – Add more apps and games to your Amazon Fire TV by connecting a USB storage device, giving you more access to games, movies, and tv shows that you love.

Captive Portal Support – Your Amazon TV can travel with you and now connect to Wi-Fi at hotels and universities hotel that require web authentication.

Wireless headphones – Late night binging on your favorite shows doesn’t have to wake up the whole house now that Amazon Fire TV is adding support for wireless Bluetooth headphones.

Prime Playlists – Prime members can now access Prime Music playlists directly from Fire TV and Fire TV Stick.

Hidden PINs – No more worries about the kids sneaking a peak at your security code when you confirm purchases.

Amazon has also added new shortcuts that make it quicker to put your device to sleep or toggle display mirroring. Apple dropped the price of Apple TV to $69, making the Amazon Fire TV’s $99 price-tag seem a bit steep compared to other options on the market.

Recent rumors have claimed Apple’s planning to beef up the Apple TV with a subscription streaming service supported by ABC, CBS, and FOX. Full details of the updated Apple TV could be revealed as early as WWDC 2015 in June.