How To Use an Amazon Fire TV Stick Without Registration of Amazon Account
The Amazon Fire TV Stick is a very popular streaming TV device because of its low-cost, full feature set, and decent streaming performance. It’s a solid centerpiece for a mid-budget TV setup. However, because it’s part of the Amazon ecosystem, when you set up your Fire TV Stick, the install app insists that you provide your Amazon account information. For most users, this isn’t a problem – in fact, it means that you can do things like integrate your Fire TV Stick with your Amazon Prime Video account easily. However, some people simply want to use the Fire TV Stick as a set-top “box” and avoid any further entanglement with the Bezos empire. In this article, I will show you how to avoid having to connect your Fire TV Stick to your Amazon account.
Don’t Buy It On Amazon
First off, if you buy your Fire TV Stick using your own Amazon account, then for the hardcore security-seeker, this article is pointless – Amazon already knows that this Fire TV Stick is associated with your account. You can still disassociate the Stick and the account by using the tips in this article, but you should be aware that Amazon has already made the connection and that data point will not go away in their vast computer network.
If your goal is to completely avoid Amazon’s watchful eye, then you need to buy a used stick via Ebay or Offerup or in some other fashion. You can usually find Fire TV Sticks on your local Craigslist page as well.
The Registration Process
When you first turn on your Fire T V Stick, it hard-boots into a setup screen, where you have to enter the details of an Amazon account in order to proceed with activating the device and getting access to its feature set. If you don’t want Amazon to know that you have this particular Stick, then you have two basic options:
- Register the Fire TV Stick using your own account, then de-register it later after you’ve installed an alternative method of accessing content, or
- Register the Fire TV Stick using a throwaway account
I’ll walk you through both of these options.
Set up a Fire TV Stick using your own account
This is a simple way to do it, though if you’re really paranoid about Amazon knowing who you are, you’ll want to use the other approach. With this approach, they could at least theoretically be aware that this Fire TV Stick is connected to your account.
- Connect the Amazon Fire TV Stick to your TV and home network.
- Enter your account details when prompted.
- Load Kodi or other content management apps.
- Select Settings->My Account->Amazon Account.
- Select De-register.
Set up a Fire TV Stick using a bogus account
- Buy a prepaid Visa gift card or prepaid Visa credit card.
- Set up a new Amazon account under a bogus name and add the Visa card as the payment method.
- Register your Amazon Fire Stick using this account.
The main issue is finding a card that will work. Gift cards that require you to enter the three-digit CVV code when paying for something won’t work on Amazon. For that reason, you might want to invest in a full-fledged prepaid Visa card; once you have that card associated to your Amazon account, you can go ahead and use its balance for something else, so all it will cost you is the starting fee for the card (usually around $4.95).
If you’ve unregistered your Amazon account, then you’ll probably want to install Kodi or a similar program on your Fire TV stick so as to have more access to content. If you’re unfamiliar with Kodi, you should know it’s one of the internet’s favorite open-source media players. Originally launched over fifteen years ago as XBMC, Kodi works as a media center and home-theater PC client, allowing you to stream and watch content anywhere from around the world. Kodi has a fantastic interface, a great theming engine complete with tons of options, preferences, and appearances, and the ability to add applications from multiple sources using software repositories. This makes Kodi one of the most powerful media streaming applications available online, especially in a post-Windows Media Center world, and if you’re looking for something with plenty of power behind it, Kodi is the app for you.
We have a full article on installing Kodi on your Fire TV Stick worth checking out.
Do you know of any way to use an Amazon Fire TV Stick without registration? Tell us below if you do!
For more information about your Amazon Fire TV Stick, Kodi, or Plex, we have a whole library of useful articles.
Here’s our walkthrough on adding Plex to your Amazon Fire TV Stick.
Kodi is still in active development, so you’ll eventually want to update Kodi on your Amazon Fire TV Stick.
Want local channels? Check out our tutorial on getting local channels on your Fire TV Stick.