Amazon releases Fire OS 3.1, adding ability to watch content on some TVs.
Amazon has released Fire OS 3.1, updating the firmware for its Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Fire HDX.
Amazon's Kindle tablets run a forked version of Android called Fire OS. The latest version, which will arrive on devices over the air in the next few weeks, integrates Amazon's Goodreads book discussion software into the reading app, it adds new enterprise features and introduces Second Screen.
That last feature looks similar to Google's Chromecast, and enables users to "fling movies and TV shows from your tablet to your TV", according to Amazon.
"Second Screen turns your TV into the primary screen and frees up your Fire HDX to provide playback controls, a customised display for X-Ray, or simply a place to email, browse the web, and more while you watch a movie," Amazon said.
Amazon appears to be trying to rival Google's Chromecast, but while that USB-sized device lets Android users share content to most TVs, Second Screen's reach is more limited. "Second Screen is available for PlayStation 3 and Samsung TVs, and will be available starting later this year for PlayStation 4."
The Goodreads tool, which lets users share quotes and recommend books to friends, "is integrated directly into the reading experience, so there’s no need to leave a book" to open the app.
Other new features in Fire OS 3.1 include voice dictation, wireless printing and Cloud Collections, a new organisation system for managing books, newspapers and apps in customised "collections" to make them easier to find.
There are also new enterprise tools, such as support for secure Wi-Fi networks, native VPN clients, and authentication tools for browsing secure intranets via its dedicated Silk browser.
If you're too impatient to wait for the over-the-air update, Fire OS 3.1 can be downloaded here.
The update is supported on the 2013 version of the Kindle Fire HD, as well as both the 7in and 8.9in Kindle Fire HDX models, but not the first generation Kindle Fire or Kindle Fire HD.