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How to Update Firestick to the Latest Software in 4 Steps (2023)

Updating your Amazon Firestick to the latest software version is highly recommended to get all the newest features, security enhancements, and performance improvements. This straightforward guide will walk you through how to update Firestick software in just a few quick steps.

What Does Updating Your Firestick Do?

Before jumping into the step-by-step instructions, let‘s look at why updating the software on your Firestick is so important:

  • Unlocks New Features: Fire OS updates add great new functionality like user profiles, expanded Alexa capabilities, updated home screen designs, and much more. Updating lets you enjoy all the latest features.

  • Enhances Performance: Software updates contain under-the-hood upgrades that optimize Firestick performance. You’ll notice faster load times, smoother streaming and overall improved speed.

  • Fixes Bugs: Updates routinely patch bugs, glitches and quirks that cause problems. Updating prevents crashes, freezes and other annoyances.

  • Boosts Security: Outdated software leaves you vulnerable to security issues. Updates patch vulnerabilities and keep your personal data safe from threats.

  • Supports New Apps: New app versions often stop supporting older Fire OS versions. Updating ensures continued compatibility with all your apps.

  • Avoids Bricking: Jailbroken/rooted Firesticks can become bricked if you upgrade to a newer major Fire OS version without updating first. Updating prevents this.

Based on research from Comparitech, around 40% of Firestick users are not running the latest software. This leaves them exposed to an average of over 200 vulnerabilities per device. Clearly, regularly updating your Firestick is critical.

How Often Should You Update Your Firestick?

Amazon issues major Fire OS updates 2-3 times per year on average. You should install each major update as soon as possible. Here are some best practices:

  • Check for new updates at least once a month.

  • Install major updates within 1-2 weeks of release.

  • Reboot your device after installing an update.

  • If issues occur, factory reset after major version upgrades.

Following these guidelines ensures your Firestick is always running the most recent software for maximum security and performance.

Step-By-Step Guide to Updating Firestick Software

Without further ado, here is the complete walkthrough for updating your Firestick:

Pre-Update Recommendations

Before installing an update, consider taking these precautions:

  • Check your internet connection speed to ensure fast and reliable WiFi. Software updates can be large files, so you need ample bandwidth.

  • Connect the Firestick directly to a power source. Don‘t run updates solely on battery power.

  • Back up any important data in case issues occur. Factory resetting after major updates is wise.

  • Allow sufficient time for updates which can take 5-15 minutes depending on size.

1. Navigate to Settings

From the Firestick home screen:

  1. Move your cursor to the top and click on the cog icon to enter Settings.

  2. In the sidebar menu, select “My Fire TV” or “Device” depending on your Firestick model.

Firestick Settings

Navigating to the Settings menu.

2. Check Current Software Version

Now we need to check what software version your Firestick is running:

  1. Select “About” from the My Fire TV/Device page.

  2. Look at the “Software Version” number here or under “Fire OS Version”.

  3. Make a note of this number so you can compare after updating.

Check Firestick Software Version

Checking your current Firestick software version.

3. Check for Software Update

Next, we’ll check for any new updates available for your device:

  1. Go back to the Settings menu and select “Check for Updates”.

  2. If an update is available, you will see the new software version number here.

  3. Make a note of this number to verify that the update installed later.

Check for Firestick Updates

Checking for the newest Firestick software.

If no update is shown, your Firestick is running the latest software already.

4. Download and Install Update

Finally, it’s time to download and install the software update:

  1. Select “Download” to download the update file to your Firestick.

  2. Once the download completes, select “Install” to install the latest software version.

Install Firestick Update

Downloading and installing the Firestick system update.

The installation process will take 5-15 minutes typically. Your Firestick will automatically reboot a few times during installation. When complete, the new Fire OS version will be ready to enjoy!

5. Verify Update Installed

To wrap up, verify that the new software version you noted earlier has installed correctly:

  1. Return to Settings > About.

  2. Check that the Fire OS version here matches the new version you downloaded.

If the expected new version is showing, congratulations! Your Firestick is now fully updated and ready for use.

Major Changes in Recent Fire OS Updates

To understand what features and improvements you’ll get from updating, here are some highlights from the last few major software releases:

Fire OS 7 (September 2020)

  • Introduced user profiles for personalized content per profile.

  • Added picture-in-picture mode to continue watching video while browsing.

  • Expanded Alexa capabilities like Alexa Announcements and SMS messaging.

  • Universal search now includes over 20 streaming apps.

Fire OS 6 (November 2019)

  • Redesigned home screen tabs for easier navigation.

  • Added option to reorder apps on Your Apps tab.

  • Improved accessibility features like VoiceView screen reader.

  • Added Amazon Music integration with Firestick remote buttons.

Fire OS 5 (October 2018)

  • New scrolling tab bar for quickly accessing apps.

  • Alexa voice control improvements.

  • Ability to connect Bluetooth headphones/speakers.

  • Renewed focus on improving performance.

Troubleshooting Firestick Update Problems

Software updates typically go smoothly. But occasionally issues can arise:

  • Stuck at Downloading – Slow internet speeds may disrupt the download. Try again on a faster connection.

  • Frozen at Installing – Forcibly reboot your Firestick by long pressing select + play/pause buttons.

  • Error Messages – Error codes usually indicate corruption. Factory reset then attempt updating again.

  • Firestick Won‘t Update – If your device just won‘t update, contact Amazon Fire TV support for assistance.

  • BRICKED! – As a last resort, manually flash stock firmware using a Windows PC to unbrick.

Updating your Firestick to get the latest features and security enhancements only takes a few minutes. Be sure to check for updates monthly and install major releases promptly. Let us know if this guide helped get your Firestick up-to-date!


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