Amazon Fire TV Channels expands free sports content, adds 'favorites' feature

Amazon’s Fire TV has expanded its sports lineup and added new personalization features on Fire TV Channels, the platform’s free ad-supported content offering.

Sports-wise, Fire TV Channels is bringing on new content from the NBA, which will feature free daily highlights from every NBA game along with NBA news and streaming videos on NBA stars. It’s also bringing more college sports into the mix with the addition of Big Ten, SEC and Big 12, providing highlights and coverage alongside existing ACC and Pac-12 content. Fire TV Channels already offers sports content from the NHL, the PGA Tour, Tennis Channel’s T2, PickleballTV, NBC Sports and Fox Sports 24/7 linear channel. Fox Sports plans to expand its offering on the platform, along with Locked On Podcast Network, as new channels launching before the end of 2023.

They mark the latest additions for Fire TV Channels, which features short-form content and previously added categories such as news, music, travel, sports and cooking, among others. As Amazon announced the expanded lineup it also touted growth for the free streaming experience, disclosing that monthly hours streamed on Fire TV Channels has grown by 726% since it first launched in May.

And the platform’s introducing two new personalization option to help viewers find content they want to watch more easily and intuitively. That includes a new “Favorites” page housed within the navigation sidebar, which aggregates user-selected “Favorite” channels in one location. There’s additional personalization for sports fan, who, through the favorites section can browse and follow their preferred teams by league, including for the NBA, NHL and MLB – enabling to stream their favorite team’s game highlights in one place.

Available on Fire TV smart TVs and streaming media players in the U.S., the ad-supported experience offers content from more than 400 providers across news, sports, entertainment and lifestyle categories. Amazon designates Fire TV Channels as a FAST experience, although it’s distinct from Amazon’s free ad-supported streaming TV (FAST) service, which offers TV shows and films and is available across a variety of platforms.

Charlotte Maines, director of Fire TV Advertising, Monetization and Engagement, previously detailed to StreamTV Insider how Fire TV Channels is working to make it easier for viewers to sift through large amounts of content and zero in on something they want by organizing and aggregating content thematically via categories and surfacing it throughout different places within the UI. In a June interview she said this “really lowers the cognitive load” as consumers struggle with choice fatigue and content discovery – while also providing more qualified viewer opportunities for advertisers.

Fire TV is expanding content on the platform alongside new options for advertisers. Earlier this month it introduced five new advertising offerings that span buying methods, CTV ad bundles, display ad placements and contextual opportunities. That includes opening up the first slot in the hero placement on the Fire TV homescreen to non-entertainment and media brands for the first time. Speaking to StreamTV Insider about the advertising capabilities in November, Maines noted the homescreen feature rotator represents “the highest impact native ad placement option we have.”

“And it's right at the top of Fire TV’s home screen, takes up half the screen. It’s persistent, so as a customer browses around the UI…they continue to see it,” Maines explained.

Article updated to correct name of Locked On Podcast Network. An earlier version incorrectly stated The Locked Out Podcast Network.