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In the YouTube comments for Amazon's Fire TV Cube unveiling video (yes, I perused the comments, I like to live dangerously), there's a bit of comment gold, from user Duane Yaiser, that really says a lot about Amazon's latest device in one succinct sentence: Amazon TV: Think Inside the Box.

The bulk of the video is of people sitting on a couch, demanding the box show them their preferred programming. Voice commands can be incredible useful, and they're rightfully the cornerstone of digital assistants. That being said, since when did hitting the button a remote become such hard work? Yes, asking Alexa about nearby restaurants and having them actually displayed to you is a very cool, very helpful feature. And I'm sure there are countless other useful features that the Fire TV Cube offers. It's a streaming box crossed with an Echo, so of course it has its value.

It's called the Fire TV Cube, though. Television is its thing. It is, first and foremost, a streaming device, and the addition of voice commands add nothing. In fact, I would argue that they could potentially be more of a nuisance than handling a remote, so here's to hoping the box has a remote.



The Fire TV Cube isn't a terrible device. In fact, I'm in the market for a streaming device, so I may very well pick one up. If you're in the same boat, maybe that's where you'll land, too. For people who don't need a streaming device, however, the cube doesn't bring anything to the market that anyone needs. This isn't an upgrade, just an inevitability. Voice commands should've simply been a feature available on the next streaming device, not the actual reason to make a streaming device. Two olds don't make a new.

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