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Frequently Asked Questions

The following are common questions about Fire App Builder.

Do apps created with Fire App Builder work on smartphone devices and tablets too, or just TV?
Currently, apps built with Fire App Builder work only on Fire TV and other Android TV platforms. A future enhancement will allow apps built with Fire App Builder to work on other devices as well. (This is why the toolkit's name is "Fire App Builder" and not "Fire TV App Builder.")
What kind of TVs do users need to have to use Fire TV? Are there special port requirements?
Users need a TV with an HDMI port.
How can I implement Google Ads?
You can implement Google ads through the VAST Component, which supports Google ads.
Does Fire App Builder support live feeds?
Yes, you can display any media from your feed. As long as your feed has valid media (live or pre-recorded), it can be played through your app built with Fire App Builder. See Configure Live Streams.
Do I need an actual Fire TV device to develop my app?
Using an actual device during development and testing is highly recommended, but you can also use an emulator with some limitations.
What's the difference between Fire App Builder and Web Application Starter Kit (WASK)?
Fire App Builder uses Java with Android to create native Java apps, with Android Studio as your IDE. WASK is a mobile web app toolkit using HTML, CSS, JavaScript instead of Java. See Amazon Development Framework Comparison for a detailed comparison between the two.
Can I submit an app built with Fire App Builder to Google's Play Store as well as Amazon's Appstore?
Yes, since both app stores play Android apps, apps built with Fire App Builder work on both the Amazon Appstore and Google Play Store. However, services unique to Amazon or Google will only work in the respective platforms. For a more general discussion of differences, see How Fire TV Development Differs from Android TV Development.
What type of captions does Fire App Builder support?
Fire App Builder supports the same closed captions/subtitles that Exoplayer supports. You can enable support for inband CEA-608 closed captions in your app's Navigator.json file. See Caption Support.
Can Fire App Builder's UI display a season with video episodes either nested below the season or on a secondary screen?
The kind of nested video display in Fire App Builder, where you would click a video title (e.g., a season) and then see all episodes for that season, is currently not possible. However, the Fire App Builder team has been working on incorporating this capability, and the feature is planned for an upcoming release.
Can Fire App Builder parse the default JSON specification from Roku?
Not currently. However, by removing the array from the videos element, Fire App Builder can parse it. You are probably better off creating a unique feed for Fire TV because you can also include recommendations in the feed. See this forum post for details. If you want to use the same feed for both platforms, consider using an MRSS feed.