Overall, these are a great substitute for the Google Chromecast. The remote is definitely an experience-improving feature, as you're able to carry out actions without your phone. However, my unit was extremely slow and unresponsive. There were various instances when the device would constantly buffer despite having stable and fast internet speeds. Additionally, there were times when I would ask my Echo Plus to turn the TV on or off and it would tell me that it's unable to do that or something along those lines.
The power and volume controls on the regular Fire TV are actually necessary. Buy that version instead if you plan on ditching your TV's original remote.