Fire TV Stick Is Amazon's Most Successful Launch Device To Date, Starts Shipping Today

Amazon has begun shipping its Fire TV Stick to customers today, the company's low-cost streaming HDMI dongle that will go up against Google's Chromecast device and a growing number of competitors. The Fire TV Stick costs just $39, and while that's $4 higher than a Chromecast, there are a few advantages to Amazon's device.

For one, it comes with a dedicated remote control to make navigation easier. There's also a mobile app available if you'd rather use your smartphone, which includes voice search -- it's powered by the same voice search engine as Amazon's Fire TV.

From a technical standpoint, the Fire TV Stick trumps both Chromecast and Roku's streaming stick with superior hardware. It has a dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, and 8GB of flash storage. It also supports features that the others don't, such as Miracast, Dolby Digital Plus, and Amazon Instant Video (also available on Roku, but not Chromecast).

Amazon Fire TV Stick

We haven't had a chance to test drive the Fire TV Stick just yet, but like many others, we're certainly intrigued with it. In fact, Amazon's says the Fire TV Stick launch has been more successful than any of its previous products, which is saying a lot considering how popular the Kindle Fire line is. That's also due in part to the $19 introductory price for Prime members (it's now back up to $39).

"Fire TV Stick has been our most successful device launch ever," said Dave Limp, Senior Vice President, Amazon Devices. "We built a ton of these, but customer demand still outpaced our supply. We’re excited by the overwhelming customer response and the team is working hard to build more as quickly as possible."

If you pre-ordered a Fire TV Stick, it should be on its way, if not now then soon. At present, Amazon shows that new orders will ship out January 15, 2015.