Highlighting a slew of smart speakers, home networking solutions and other smart gadgets Amazon introduced in a virtual press conference Wednesday was its flagship “Omni” house brand Fire TV series featuring 4K QLED (quantum dot) color enhanced Full Array LED backlighting and intelligently operated “Ambient Experiences” when television programs are on or off.

Amazon’s latest “Omni” house-brand flagship QLED Fire TV lineup that includes two sizes, a 65-inch model retailing for $799.99 and 75-inch priced at $1,099.99. Both are available for pre-order now and will be released Oct. 27th.

Note that these models use traditionally sized LEDs and not mini-LEDs being offered by some other brands in generally more expensive and higher-end televisions.

Amazon said the 65- and 75-inch Omni sets include 80 and 96 local dimming zones, respectively, for enhanced contrast and black level performance, but are limited to 60Hz native refresh rate panels and three HDMI 2.0 inputs and an HDMI 2.1 eARC/ARC port.

These are also the first Amazon Fire TVs to add support for the Dolby Vision IQ high dynamic range (HDR) profile, in addition to HDR10+ Adaptive and HDR10+ Gaming. Dolby Vision IQ and HDR10+ Adaptive require compatible content to auto adjust brightness and contrast levels to the room lighting conditions.

These are also the first Amazon Fire TVs to add support for the Dolby Vision IQ high dynamic range (HDR) profile, in addition to HDR10+ Adaptive and HDR10+ Gaming.

They also support traditional HDR10 and broadcast HLG HDR profiles. Dolby Vision IQ, HDR10+ Adaptive and a new Adaptive Brightness feature for general brightness, will each automatically adjust the brightness and contrast levels of HDR and standard dynamic range images to help the televisions perform at their best automatically, under continuously varying levels of ambient room light.

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The Fire TV models also include a new custom sensor package located on the front of the TV. A presence sensor will help tell the TV when someone has entered or left the room so it can turn the set off.

Further, Amazon said the new TV series will include an ambient light sensor to detect and determine the source of movement in the room so that it can turn off the TV if viewers are presumed to have left the room for a long period, or turn it on and adjust the “ambient experience” for the morning sunrise.

The ambient experience is also Amazon’s way of having the television present relevant visuals when it is not being used to what any programs. This ambient experience includes a package of artwork, photos and Alexa widgets that can be customize to fit the screen to keep room occupants visually entertained peripherally.

The package of artistic treatments includes more than 1,500 landscapes, motion visuals, paintings and photographs from artists, museums or their own personal photo collection.

The Alexa Widgets that can be selected to appear include on-screen news briefs, a personal calendar with reminders, and music streaming recommendations.

The room monitoring systems can be switched off for anyone who might be averse to their television watching them. Similarly, a microphone included to help Alexa take hands-free voice commands can be physically disconnected with a hard switch on the TV bezel.

The sets continue to include built-in Alexa voice control that turns the television into a large Amazon smart speaker to carry out a variety of commands from playing streamed music to controlling compatible home networking products.

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By Greg Tarr

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