New Alexa Voice Remote adds more buttons

A quick glance at the image below and anyone who uses an Amazon Fire TV device will recognize some significant changes that have been made to the remote control. The new Alexa Voice Remote for Fire TV devices is officially available for pre-order as a standalone upgrade. It's also the remote that comes with the third-generation Fire TV stick in many regions, including the US, Canada, Germany, and others.

The remote has the same functionality as the existing Alexa Voice Remote with some added buttons and extras. Among the added buttons and extras are a Live Guide button and a quartet of app buttons. The addition of the four buttons on the bottom of the remote, which link directly to popular streaming apps that vary depending on the country, is the most notable change.

The third-edition voice remote marks the first time Amazon has included buttons that link directly to apps on remotes sold with its stand-alone Fire TV devices. Stand-alone buttons of the sort were available on remotes that came with fire TV Edition televisions and soundbars in the past. As you would expect, pressing one of the buttons launches the app listed on the button.

The version of the remote for the US has buttons directly linking to Prime Video, Netflix, Disney+, and Hulu. It appears that the Prime Video and Netflix buttons are standard on the remote in all regions, with the other two changing depending on the area. Anyone who uses those apps will appreciate the extra buttons on the remote, but it does make the remote busier.

Amazon doesn't allow users to customize which apps the buttons launch. The new remote also adds a button with a TV icon to launch the Fire TV integrated channel guide. The standard black microphone button has been replaced with a blue button that has the Alexa logo. The remote can be preordered right now for $29.99, with the launch coming on April 14 in the US, and is compatible with all versions of the Fire TV.