If you are looking to buy a Fire Amazon product, you might be stuck trying to choose between the TV Cube and the Fire Stick 4K. To pick the best one for your home, you need to learn the key differences, and which one might be more suitable for your family. Knowing which one better meets your household needs is also important.
Choosing the Fire TV Cube or the Fire Stick 4K will depend on what kind of streaming capabilities you want and if you want a speaker as well. The major difference is that the Fire TV Cube is also an Amazon Alexa speaker and it’s much larger than the stick.
You might be aware that there are four different choices for Fire Sticks and only one Fire TV Cube. The Fire Stick 4K is one of the newer models and is similar in many ways to the Fire Cube. They also have some key differences. By the end of this article, you will know which one is most suitable for your home and lifestyle.
Streaming and Programming
Even though we are only reviewing the Fire Stick 4K in this article, you should know that there are 4 different types of Amazon Fire Sticks:
If you are upgrading to 4K, you will have many new features along with a new remote. Fire TV Cube and the Fire Stick 4k both have Fire TV OS and UHD streaming. They also all offer the same programming and apps.
The resolutions and the streaming qualities though are drastically different from older Fire TV stick models. 4k Resolution and HDR come with both the 4k stick and the Fire TV Cube. No matter which one you choose, you will get the same picture resolutions.
The regular Fire TV stick and the Fire Stick Lite do not support 4k resolutions. They only get up to 1080p. If you’re not sure what this means, check out this comparison guide. If you are upgrading to the 4k model, you will definitely see a difference in your streaming quality.
Now, let’s take a look at the sizes and designs.
Size and Design
If you have your Fire device in a visible spot in your home, you might want to consider the design and how it will look on your TV stand.
The Fire Stick 4k is 4.25 x 1.18 x 0.55 inches. With the Fire TV Stick, you will also have a small USB that plugs into the TV. You still need a power supply though. The port alone will not be able to allow your stick to fully function.
The Fire Cube is completely different. The box is 3.4 square inches. It has a stylish design though; you can easily place it in the sitting room without anyone even noticing.
You still need to consider how much space you have around the TV though. If your TV is hanging on a wall, you might have to purchase a small table for the Fire TV Cube. Fire TV Cube also supports an ethernet connection.
If your WIFI isn’t very strong, you might have to use an ethernet connection to be able to stream and access large files. If this is your situation, you have to get a Fire TV Cube. The Fire Stick won’t work.
Now that you know the designs, let’s check out how Alexa is integrated with the devices.
Integration of Alexa
You can be sure that with any Amazon device, you get Alexa integration. However, the type of integration and the support you get will depend on the device. The Fire Stick offers what Amazon calls “Full Integration.”
This means you can do things like:
- Manage your shopping lists
- Make tasks lists for yourself or the children
- Look up the scores of your favorite sports team
- Search traffic conditions before hitting the road
- Create playlists
- Check the weather
The Fire TVs have Alexa voice remotes so you can use Alexa to do virtually anything.
With the Fire Cube, you get even more though. It’s also fully integrated with Alexa and works as an Alexa speaker. You can directly give the Fire Cube commands without having to hold down a button on the remote like you would with the fire sticks.
Since you can use the Fire Cube as a speaker, you can also directly tell it to control the lights in your house, and any other smart home features you have such as thermostats. Keep in mind that the other features also need to be smart devices and they need to be compatible with Alexa to work with the Fire Cube.
Check the guides to your other smart devices to see if they can use Alexa.
In summary for Alexa controls:
- Choose the Fire Cube if you don’t already have an Alexa speaker.
- Choose the Fire Cube if you already have or are planning to buy other smart home automation like cameras and lights.
- Choose the Fire Stick 4k if you already have an Amazon Speaker that you use.
- Choose the Fire Stick 4k if you don’t care about having an Amazon Speaker or won’t use one anyway.
Each remote control also operates differently and has different buttons.
The basic Firestick has a very small remote control without many features, so you will notice the upgrade to the 4K. The new remotes have speakers perfect for talking to Alexa.
The Fire Stick 4k and the Fire Cube both also have upgraded remotes. They are called Alexa remotes, not Fire remotes like the options from the Fire Stick Lite or the regular Fire Stick.
With the 4k and Fire Cube you will get a remote with:
- Power buttons
- Volume buttons
- A mute button
This means you don’t have to use the D-pad like on other Fire remotes if you are used to one of the older models. You will have individual buttons for all these features. You can also use it to control the whole TV, not just the Fire player.
Since the remotes for the Fire TV Cube and the 4K are the same, it’s not a huge factor when trying to decide which device might be better for you. You will get the same features and buttons on both remotes.
Now, the most important question. Let’s look at the prices.
When looking at buying a new device, you always want to know the price.
Here is a breakdown of the prices:
- Fire TV Stick 4K: $50
- Fire TV Cube: $120
There’s a large price difference when it comes to the Fire Cube being over double that of the Fire Stick 4k. This is mostly because it also functions as a speaker. If you already have a speaker, there’s no point in getting the Fire Cube unless you just want another speaker for the house.
Many people find that having multiple speakers is useful for smart home integration. You can also move your current speaker to the children’s room or your bedroom. Then, the Fire TV Cube will be the new speaker for the living room.
Once you know the difference between the Fire Stick 4K and the Fire TV Cube, choosing one should be easy. They both offer the same resolution and remote. The only main differences are the size and the speaker’s capabilities.