A TV screen showing options of the Amazon Fire ©AFP PHOTO/Don Emmert

A TV screen showing options of the Amazon Fire
©AFP PHOTO/Don Emmert

(Washington-AFP) – Amazon announced Tuesday its Fire TV media stick for streaming video is being sold in Britain and Germany, as part of a push to expand its online television services.

The US online and retail giant also said its media stick — a rival to Google Chromecast — would also get an update to allow many people to use the device away from home, such as at hotels and university campuses requiring Web authentication.

Amazon already sells a streaming media box with additional features and gaming in Britain and Germany, and will seek to expand its base with the less expensive stick.

The device will sell for 35 pounds in Britain and 39 euros in Germany.

“Customer response to Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick has been overwhelming — we’ve been working hard to build more of both as quickly as possible, and we’re excited to be adding new features we think customers will love,” said Peter Larsen, Amazon’s vice president for devices.

“In the UK and Germany, Fire TV is already the best-selling streaming media box on Amazon , and we’re thrilled to be bringing our fastest-selling Amazon device ever — Fire TV Stick — to the UK and Germany.”

Amazon introduced the plug-in stick, a device the size of a pack of gum, last October in the United States.

It provides access to Amazon Instant Video as well as other services including Netflix, Hulu Plus, WatchESPN and NBA Game Time. It can also “mirror” content from tablet computers and smartphones.

Amazon claims its device has more processing power and memory than Chromecast’s and similar dongles such as one from Roku.