How to Connect a Fire Stick to a USB Drive

Move Fire Stick apps to a connected USB drive to free up space

While most Amazon Fire TV Stick devices don’t feature a built-in USB drive, it’s still possible to connect a USB drive to a Fire Stick by using a USB adapter cable. This guide will walk you through the entire process for how to connect a USB drive to a Fire Stick and what to do once everything’s hooked up.

Fire TV Cube, Fire TV Stick 3, Fire TV Stick Lite, Fire TV Stick 4K Max and newer models feature full support for USB drives in the operating system and can be used for transferring apps and games. All Fire Sticks can view media on a connected USB drive via a file browser app.

How Do I Connect a USB Drive to My Fire Stick?

To connect a USB drive to an Amazon Fire TV Stick, you’ll need to purchase a special USB cable adapter.

USB adapter OTG cable.

This accessory is essentially a Micro USB cable with a USB port in the middle and allows for the connection of a USB drive without interrupting the Fire Stick’s power supply.

The type of USB cable adapter used to connect a USB drive to a Fire Stick can usually be purchased for less than $10. When buying one, make sure both cable ends are Micro USB and the port in the middle is a regular-sized USB port. It’s sometimes referred to as an OTG cable adapter.

Here’s how to use this adapter cable to plug a USB drive into your Fire Stick.

  1. Plug one end of the USB cable adapter into the Micro USB port on the Amazon Fire Stick.

    Amazon Fire TV Stick connected to USB adapter cable.
  2. Connect the other end of the adapter into the Fire Stick charging cable.

    Amazon Fire Stick, USB adapter cable, and charging cable.
  3. If you usually plug the Fire Stick charging cable into a USB port on the TV to power the Fire Stick, do so now. Otherwise, connect the cable to its AC adapter and plug it into a power outlet on a wall near the TV.

    Fire Stick with USB cable adapter and AC adapter.
  4. Connect the Amazon Fire TV Stick to your TV's HDMI port as per usual.

    An Amazon Fire TV Stick being connected to a TV's HDMI port.
  5. Turn the TV and Fire Stick on.

    Amazon Fire TV Stick home screen.
  6. Plug your USB drive into the USB port on the adapter cable. A small notification should appear in the lower-right corner to confirm the USB drive has been detected.

    For optimum performance, Amazon recommends your USB drive be USB 3.0 no larger than 128 GB in size.

    Fire TV Stick home screen with connected USB notification.
  7. Before the notification disappears, press the button on the Fire Stick remote with the three horizontal lines.

    Fire TV Stick home screen with the Menu icon highlighted in the connected USB notification.
  8. To transfer Fire Stick apps to your USB drive, you'll need to format it. Select Yes to begin the format process.

    Formatting the USB drive will delete everything currently on it.

    Fire Stick USB formatting confirmation screen.
  9. Select Yes.

    The Yes option highlighted on the USB formatting screen on Fire TV Stick Lite.
  10. The USB format process will start. It should take no more than a few minutes to complete.

    Once it's finished, select OK.

    A message confirming that USB formatting is complete on a Fire Stick.
  11. You should be returned to the Fire TV Stick's Home screen. Select Settings to continue the USB drive setup and transfer apps onto it.

    Amazon Fire TV Stick Home screen with the Settings icon highlighted.
  12. Select My Fire TV.

    My Fire TV highlighted from the Fire TV Stick Settings screen.
  13. Highlight USB Drive to view its used and available disk space. Select USB Drive to view more options for managing the connected USB drive.

    The USB Drive option from the My Fire TV settings.
  14. Select Eject USB Drive if you want to safely remove the USB drive without damaging its contents.

    Physically removing a USB drive without selecting this option can corrupt or damage files.

    The Eject USB Drive option on a Fire TV Stick.
  15. Select Format to External Storage if you want to use your USB drive on other devices.

    This process essentially removes the Fire Stick format process you did when you initially connected your USB drive to your Fire Stick.

    The Format to External Storage Fire Stick USB option.
  16. Select Manage Installed Applications to move apps and video games to and from your USB drive.

    Fire TV Stick Manage Installed Applications menu option.
  17. Any Android apps you have installed on your USB drive, if any, will appear here.

    Select Show USB Only to view apps that are installed locally on your Fire Stick and begin transferring some to your USB drive.

    USB file management on Fire TV Stick.
  18. Select Internal Only.

    Fire Stick Internal Only app management screen.
  19. Select the app you want to transfer from your Fire Stick's local storage to your connected USB drive.

    Twitch app highlighted on Fire TV Stick app list.
  20. Select Move to USB Storage to transfer the app to your connected USB drive.

    Twitch app menu options on Fire Stick.
  21. Once selected, the app transfer process will begin. Do not touch any buttons on the remote while this transfer is being done.

    USB app transfer screen on Fire Stick.
  22. Repeat this process for as many Fire Stick apps and video games as you like.

    Many first-party Amazon apps cannot be transferred off of Fire Sticks. These apps will not show you the USB transfer option during the above steps so you don't need to worry about accidentally transferring an app you shouldn't.

    Apps stored on a USB stick connected to an Amazon Fire TV Stick.
  23. To move apps from your USB drive to your Fire Stick's local storage, select the app from the app list and select Move to internal storage.

    Move to internal storage option in Fire Stick settings menu.

Does Amazon Fire Stick Have USB Support?

Amazon’s Fire TV Stick streaming sticks do support USB though the level of support will depend on the model being used.

All Fire TV Cube models feature full USB support as do Fire TV Stick models released in 2000 and after. This means while the Fire TV Stick Lite, Fire TV Stick 3, and Fire TV Stick 4K Max fully support USB functionality for transferring apps and video games, the regular Fire TV Stick 4K and the first two versions of the original Fire TV Stick don’t.

If you don’t see the USB menu option in Settings > My Fire TV, it’s likely you’re using a Fire Stick model which doesn’t offer full USB support.

Fire Stick models that don’t fully support USB for app transfers can still be used to view images and movies stored on a connected USB drive.

X-plore File Manager app on Amazon Fire TV Stick Lite.

To do this, connect the USB drive to the Fire Stick following the above steps and then open a file browser app such as S-plore File Manager to access the contents of the connected storage device.

Download For:

There are many file manager apps that can be downloaded onto Amazon’s Fire Sticks but S-plore File Manager is free and works well with connected USB devices.

Can You Connect Fire Stick to USB Devices?

A variety of USB devices can be connected to Amazon Fire TV Sticks via the USB adapter cable method shown at the top of this page.

Fire Sticks also support Bluetooth for wireless connectivity to other devices. If you don’t want the hassle of dealing with lots of cables, try connecting a Bluetooth device instead.

Keyboards, mice, and even video game controllers have all been proven to work with Fire Stick models which feature full USB support though functionality can vary on older models.

FAQ
  • How do I connect a Fire Stick to a laptop USB?

    If you want to use your Fire Stick with a laptop or computer, you need an HDMI splitter and a capture card to make the connection work with your laptop's USB port. Attach your Fire Stick to the HDMI extender that came with the device > connect the HDMI extender to your HDMI splitter > and then connect a separate HDMI cord from the HDMI splitter to your capture card. Finally, plug in the capture card's USB cable and connect it to a USB port on your laptop.

  • What happens if I allow USB debugging on a Fire Stick?

    USB debugging allows you to sideload apps to your Fire Stick, which means you can add apps you have on your computer (that aren't available in the official Appstore) to your Fire TV. If you turn on this setting, you can also sideload apps from your Android phone to your Fire Stick.

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