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Which Firestick Do I Have? How To Identify Your Fire TV Device in 2022

Amazon‘s Firestick has become the streaming media player of choice for over 50 million active users. With its inexpensive price point and access to virtually endless entertainment options through channels and apps, it‘s easy to see why the Firestick has dominated the market, accounting for over 30% of streaming device sales last year alone according to Statista.

But with over a decade of history and more than 10 different models released, it can be tricky to identify exactly which Firestick version you actually own. This guide will make it easy to find out.

Knowing your specific Firestick model matters because each version has different technical capabilities that determine video resolution, performance speed, and what features are supported. Certain apps or functions may only work on newer 4K models, while older sticks can‘t handle Ultra HD content.

We‘ll cover everything you need to pinpoint your Firestick generation. Just follow these sections:

  • Firestick generations and features overview
  • Step-by-step guide to using the Informer app
  • Comparison of Firestick pros, cons and ideal usage
  • Tips to maintain performance and troubleshoot issues
  • FAQs on key differences between models

Let‘s start by looking at how the Firestick line-up has evolved over the years…

A Brief History of Firestick Models and Features

Amazon entered the streaming device market in early 2014 with the debut of the 1st generation Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. Since then, new iterations have been periodically released with improved specs and capabilities.

Here‘s a quick chronological overview of major Firestick and Fire TV releases:

April 2014 – 1st Gen Fire TV and 1st Gen Fire TV Stick

September 2015 – 2nd Gen Fire TV

October 2016 – 2nd Gen Fire TV Stick

October 2018 – Fire TV Stick 4K

September 2020 – Fire TV Stick Lite and updated 3rd Gen Fire TV Stick

October 2021 – Fire TV Stick 4K Max

As this timeline shows, Amazon has strategically updated models over the years to keep pace with video and streaming technology advancements. Next we‘ll break down the key specs and features of each generation…

Firestick Generations and Specs

Here is an in-depth look at the technical specifications for each major Firestick and Fire TV model released by Amazon:

1st Gen Fire TV (2014)

The OG Fire TV kicked things off in 2014 as Amazon‘s debut streaming media player.


  • Video Resolution: 720p HD

  • Processor: Quad-core 1.7GHz

  • Storage: 2GB

  • RAM: 1GB

  • WiFi: 802.11a/b/g/n dual-band

  • Bluetooth: 4.0

  • Ethernet: 10/100

This original Fire TV box established the overall formula – solid performance for HD streaming at an affordable price point. Lack of 4K keeps it dated today though.

2nd Gen Fire TV (2015)

A year later, Amazon updated the box with 4K…


  • Video Resolution: 4K UHD @ 30fps

  • Processor: Quad-core 1.5GHz

  • Storage: 8GB

  • RAM: 2GB

  • WiFi: 802.11a/b/g/n/ac dual-band

  • Bluetooth: 4.1

  • Ethernet: 10/100/1000

With 4K support, more storage, and upgraded wireless, the 2nd Gen Fire TV delivered meaningful improvements. It remains a solid performer today.

1st Gen Fire TV Stick (2014)

Alongside the 1st Fire TV, Amazon introduced the more compact Fire TV Stick in 2014.


  • Video Resolution: 1080p HD

  • Processor: Dual-core 1.0GHz

  • Storage: 1GB

  • RAM: 512MB

  • WiFi: 802.11b/g/n single-band

  • Bluetooth: 3.0

This handy portable streamer quickly gained popularity for converting any TV with an open HDMI port into a smart TV. But performance was mediocre.

2nd Gen Fire TV Stick (2016)

In 2016, the streaming stick received some nice enhancements…


  • Video Resolution: 1080p HD

  • Processor: Quad-core 1.3GHz

  • Storage: 8GB

  • RAM: 1GB

  • WiFi: 802.11a/b/g/n/ac dual-band

  • Bluetooth: 4.1

With a faster processor and 5x the storage, the 2nd Gen Fire Stick delivered much smoother streaming performance. It remains a solid budget option today.

Fire TV Stick 4K (2018)

Two years later, Amazon brought 4K quality to their compact streamer…


  • Video Resolution: 4K UHD @ 60fps

  • Processor: Quad-core 1.7GHz

  • Storage: 8GB

  • RAM: 1.5GB

  • WiFi: 802.11a/b/g/n/ac dual-band

  • Bluetooth: 5.0

Capable of stunning Ultra HD visuals with HDR support, the Fire Stick 4K remains one of the best streamers out there.

Fire TV Stick Lite (2020)

The Fire Stick Lite delivered a newer budget HD model:


  • Video Resolution: 1080p HD

  • Processor: Quad-core 1.7GHz

  • Storage: 8GB

  • RAM: 1GB

  • WiFi: 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac dual-band

  • Bluetooth: 5.0

This pared down stick skips the volume/power buttons but retains solid performance for HD streaming.

Fire TV Stick 4K Max (2021)

Amazon‘s latest and most advanced model, the 4K Max boasts:


  • Video Resolution: 4K UHD @ 60fps

  • Processor: Quad-core 1.8GHz

  • Storage: 8GB

  • RAM: 2GB

  • WiFi: 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac + WiFi 6 support

  • Bluetooth: 5.0

With a faster processor, more RAM, and WiFi 6 compatibility, the 4K Max is designed to be 40% more powerful than the previous Fire Stick 4K.

This covers the key specs and features for each major Firestick and Fire TV generation. Now let‘s look at how to easily identify which specific model you own.

Using the Informer App to Check Your Firestick Model

Luckily there is a simple way to find out exactly which Firestick version you have, without having to dig into complex system settings.

An app called Informer – created by the developer of the popular Downloader app for Fire TV – will scan your device and identify the specific model.

Here is a step-by-step guide to using Informer to check your Firestick:

1. From the home screen, go to the Search function.

You can use the Alexa voice remote to speak your search, or navigate to the magnifying glass icon and select it.

2. Search for “Informer App” and select it from the results.

Make sure you choose the actual Informer app, not the website or other results.

3. Choose Download and install Informer.

You may need to enable app install permissions if prompted.

4. Open Informer once installed.

You can select Open from the launch confirmation screen or find it in Your Apps & Channels.

5. Informer will quickly scan your device then identify the model.

It usually takes just a few seconds to complete the scan and show your Firestick name.

As you can see, the Informer app makes it super simple to find out exactly which Fire TV device you own. No settings menus required!

Now that you know your model, let‘s examine the pros, cons, and ideal usage scenarios for each Firestick generation.

Firestick Comparison – Strengths, Limitations and Recommended Uses

With so many Firestick generations available, it can be tricky to know which model best fits your needs and budget. Here is a detailed comparison highlighting the advantages of each:

Fire TV Stick Lite


  • Affordable price, often $29.99 or less

  • Handles HD streaming smoothly

  • Good entry-level choice for casual streaming


  • Lacks volume/power buttons on remote

  • 1GB RAM can struggle with larger apps

  • No 4K or HDR support

  • HD-only output lacks future-proofing as 4K TVs decline in price

Recommended for: Cost-conscious consumers who mainly want basic HD streaming. But better options exist for just a little more money.

2nd Gen Fire TV Stick


  • Faster performance than the 1st gen model

  • Reliable for smooth 1080p streaming

  • Affordable price point, often $39.99 or less


  • No 4K video support

  • A bit outdated compared to newer models

  • Remote lacks volume/power controls

Recommended for: Customers focused on getting the lowest price while still maintaining decent HD streaming capability.

Fire Stick 4K


  • 4K and HDR provide future-proofing as more households adopt Ultra HD televisions

  • Excellent overall performance

  • Good value at around $49.99

  • Handles demanding apps and multitasking needs


  • More expensive than HD-only models

Recommended for: People with 4K TVs who want the best video quality and streaming experience. It‘s the sweet spot between price and performance.

Fire TV Stick 4K Max


  • Most powerful Firestick thanks to a faster 1.8GHz processor

  • Extra 1GB RAM great for multitasking and using many apps

  • WiFi 6 provides faster and more reliable wireless connectivity

  • Future-proofed for optimal 4K streaming


  • High price of $54.99

  • Improvements only noticeable for heavy streaming users

Recommended for: Those who want the absolute best Firestick performance and plan to stream 4K extensively, use many apps simultaneously, or connect wireless in congested environments. For most, the standard 4K stick is sufficient.

The key is choosing the Firestick with the optimal blend of features, power, and price point for your specific needs and budget. Let‘s move on to some tips for keeping your Firestick running smoothly long-term.

Maintenance Tips to Keep Your Firestick Performing Like New

Here are 7 tips to help maintain peak performance and troubleshoot common issues on your Firestick:

1. Check for system updates weekly.

Amazon issues regular software patches, bug fixes, and new features. Keeping updated is essential.

2. Close apps fully when done using them.

Double press the Home button and select the X to fully close unused apps rather than just minimizing them. This frees up device resources.

3. Restart your Firestick weekly.

Rebooting clears the cache and keeps things running fresh and fast. Unplug power for 30 seconds.

4. Use a surge protector.

Protect your device from power spikes that can damage electronics.

5. Reinstall problematic apps.

If an app is freezing or force closing, uninstall it completely then reinstall the latest version. This often fixes bugs.

6. Delete unused apps and files.

De-clutter your Firestick by removing apps, videos, photos, etc you no longer need. This saves storage space.

7. Factory reset for serious issues.

If troubleshooting doesn’t resolve problems, start fresh by resetting your device to factory default settings.

Proper maintenance goes a long way towards keeping your Firestick running as good as new. Now let‘s go over some commonly asked questions.

FAQs on Firestick Differences

Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions comparing Firestick models and capabilities:

Q: Does the basic Firestick do 4K?

A: No, only the Fire TV Stick 4K and 4K Max have 4K ultra HD streaming. The other models max out at 1080p HD resolution.

Q: How can I tell which generation Firestick I own?

A: Use the Informer app detailed earlier to easily identify your Firestick model number without ambiguity.

Q: Is the 4K Max worth the extra $5 over the regular 4K version?

A: Only if you are a heavy streamer who constantly multitasks and uses multiple demanding apps simultaneously. For most, the standard Fire Stick 4K provides more than enough power.

Q: What’s the main difference between the Fire Stick Lite vs the 4K?

A: The Fire Stick Lite is limited to 1080p HD streaming while the 4K model supports 4K ultra HD. But the Lite costs less.

Q: Will my old remote work on the newer Firestick models?

A: Yes, you can sync the latest Alexa voice remote to older generation Firesticks and Fire TV boxes after pairing.

Q: Do I need the 4K model if I only have an HD TV?

A: No, the HD-only sticks will work fine on non-4K TVs. But the 4K version will provide better future-proofing if you upgrade TVs soon.

Q: Which apps don’t work on older Firesticks?

A: Most apps work across generations, but some graphics-heavy services like Luna Cloud Gaming may struggle on sticks released before the Fire Stick 4K.

Hopefully this guide has helped you identify your exact Firestick model and given you a detailed understanding of each generation‘s capabilities. With the right match between your needs and budget, the Firestick makes an excellent affordably-priced streaming media player.


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