Amazon Unlock Echo Stereo Home Theatre Function
In what is tipped for tonight’s launch event, Amazon has rolled out a new firmware update to its Amazon Echo speaker lineup that unlocks the ability to create a network of speakers with Amazon Fire TV.
The update effectively transforms your Echo speakers into a makeshift home theatre setup using your existing Echo Dot, Echo Plus or the newly introduced high-end Amazon Echo Studio.
While the feature has been present in the Google Home speakers, Apple HomePod and Sonos speakers, this is the first time that Amazon has added the feature to its Amazon speakers, with functionality extended to the Fire TV system.
Unfortunately, the firmware limits the home theatre functionality to a max 2.1 setup, however, it does open the door to the possibility of a 5.1 or even a 7.1 speaker setup exclusively using Amazon Echo speakers.
Provided you have an Amazon Fire TV Cube or Amazon Fire TV Stick (4K model included), setting up Home Theatre System on Fire TV is as easy as connecting the two devices to the same network and configuring them through your account.
Through the Alexa mobile application, you can configure the ‘Home Cinema’ which takes roughly five minutes to complete.
The various configurations for Amazon Echo speakers are as follows:
- 1.0 (one Echo device working as an external speaker)
- 1.1 (one Echo device operating as an external speaker with Echo Sub
- 2.0 (two Echo devices working as external speakers, one for left audio and one for right audio)
- 2.1 (two Echo devices working as external speakers, left, right, and one Echo device as the Sub)
While Amazon is by no means a high-end audio company, outside of its Echo Studio, it does give current users the chance to upgrade their existing sound system with products they may already own, as well as opening the door for an affordable approach to stereo home theatre.
That being said, an Amazon Echo speaker setup is unlikely to impress the most experienced audiophile, though it might just impress your mates.