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Rumor: Amazon Plans to Announce Video Streaming Box Next Week (Updated)

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Finding a way to get customers to stick to a single streaming media service is always tricky business for a company. With that being said, the battle for hardware space in your living room has been heating up recently, and Amazon is ready to throw its hat in the ring. Latest reports show that Amazon’s event next week in New York City is centered around a new web-to-TV streaming box.

An invite is making the rounds to news sites, inviting reporters to an event on April 2 that starts at 11AM. That is next Wednesday in case you don’t have your calendar within arms reach. The invite offers people to get an update on Amazon’s video business from Peter Larsen himself.

Rumors going around say that we will finally get to see Amazon’s delayed media streaming device. We are expecting to see a heavily forked version of Android powering this device, and you can expect a lot of talk about Amazon Prime considering its recent price increase.

Amazon Prime owners, does this news interest you at all?

Update: The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the video service that will be announced next week by Amazon will be a free-to-use video service. This is quite different from Amazon’s current video plans, which require a paid Amazon Prime subscription. The WSJ says this new service will be ad-supported to keep it free, and that it will feature lots of original programming. The report also suspects Amazon is to announce a set-top box alongside this new service.

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Via: re/code
  • kelly1519

    According to the news by BidnessEtc, the amazon
    spokesperson denied the news report the very next day that its Fire TV is a
    threat for Netflix, he quoted “Amazon is experimenting with new things, but as
    of now there is no plans to offer a free streaming media service” http://bit.ly/1h7HNds

  • hfoster52

    Android app for amazon instant video will solve this. Looks like they are making a chromecast killer.

    • Blue Sun

      Did you mean Chromecast knock off?

      • hfoster52

        Sorry the sarcasm didn’t show through.

  • TheOgler

    Irrelevance aside, a couple of my coworkers got to test drive it. Apparently the UI is as godawful as any other streaming service’s linear-based menu, and the UX itself is clumsy and frustrating.

    • Blue Sun

      I can’t wait to see this hot mess.

  • Joe Lemaire

    Yup, they just need to announce an android app capable of streaming Instant Videos from Amazon. I’d love it to have Chromecast support too.

    Other than that, I’d love to see some kind of subscription-based video service. Basically, I want to watch TV shows on demand, but I don’t want to buy every fricken show that I want to watch. Like Google’s All-access music pass, someone needs an All-access video pass, at least for TV programming (maybe not for actual movies). But that’s probably a pipe dream….

    • Bryan

      I sort of have that with my Roku3 and Plex on my PC. I get to watch a lot of TV shows, commercial free, on my TV. It’s not perfect, but it does what I need to get shows without having to watch on my computer or buy every episode.
      I also have Amazon Instant Prime and Netflix (streaming + DVD), so my TV viewing is pretty much covered.

  • droid

    knowing amazon, this thing will probably be cheap

  • Bionic

    I hate Amazon for not bringing a video app to the android market. We all know why, even before this announcement. They want you to buy their hardware even their hardware sucks.

    • Dan

      Actually their hardware is pretty nice once you root and load a custom ROM.

  • Bionicman

    whats the point? they could have so much more amazon prime usage with every other device out there. I don’t see the point in releasing a dedicated video streaming box. unless this device has some crazy, out of this world features, not interested.

  • tzoller

    If its not free, Amazon is late, since most have a ROKU or another device that has Amazon. What would be the advantage to a Prime customer who watches their stream now?????

  • Kunal

    Until Amazon releases the Instant Video app for Android (and we all know they have it ready) they can go piss off.

    • Gideon Waxfarb

      If any of the press attend this event, they need to ask Amazon WTF is up with this.

    • michael arazan

      Preaching to the choir. Considering android is over 70% in the world markets, it would make sense, you’d think they would want that availability.

      But they don’t want to lose their market of their own devices. A Billion more people buying their services or selling tablets in the US, seems like an easy decision.

  • Raven65

    Just to pile on… I already have this covered through my Xbox 360. Don’t need yet another box that is dedicated to only one screen in my house. No interest in this whatsoever. GIVE ME AN ANDROID APP so I can stream Amazon Instant Video to my Nexus 7 tablet, D@MMIT! It’s B.S. that they provide an app for iOS users but not Android.

  • http://BGR.COM/ riggs

    Stupid…. All these streaming services trying to pump out hardware. Why don’t these companies make their software better. I already have a ROKU with more channels I can shake a stick at. Content is pretty much there with any service I pick… now give me a better UX. My TV only has so many HDMI ports.

  • Stinker

    Why don’t they just push Roku?

  • JimmyHACK

    Cheap cheap or free for prime users and hell ya. Would still love them to support Amazon video on Android/Chromecast outside of Kindles. For a streaming service that you want to sell, locking people out is counter-productive.

  • Detonation

    I feel like video streaming boxes like this shouldn’t need to exist anymore. Between my smart tv, xbox, playstation, chromecast, and laptop hdmi out, I have more than enough ways to stream content to my tv. Chances are most people also own at least one of those (or will in the near future).

  • EC8CH

    Screw you amazon. Make a friggin android app with Chromecast support already.

  • Henry Flower

    yet another streaming device seems illogical in terms of capturing market share. What i would willingly pay more for is not another box but deeper content inventory. Netflix streaming is abysmal. Huge opportunity to deliver wider content.

  • Shawn Spring

    Not really. When I had a Roku with the old TV, it was my preferred method…now that I’ve upgraded to a Sony SmartTV, its Amazon “app” allows me to connect directly to my Prime account. Slower (and more clunky) than the Roku interface, but it gets the job done. Watched the latest episode of Castle on it last night in fact. I’d have exactly zero reasons to buy an Amazon Box – and as the majority of consumers transition to “smarter” TVs, I’d imagine there really isn’t going to be a huge market for this.

  • Cory_S

    To me this just means they are less likely to ever release a real Android app, or support Chromecast. The only device I have that supports Prime video is my PS3, and I really hate using it. Seems every time I spin it up it has to do a mondontory OS update which takes 10-15 minutes.

    • RAZR_FANN

      Same here. All I’ve got is my 360. It doesn’t update that often, but it’s just a pain to get to when I have my Android devices.

    • Gideon Waxfarb

      I don’t disagree with you, but the PS3 added automatic updates a while back. That should help a bit :)

      • Cory_S

        Really? Like how far back? I used it probably a month ago and it did that annoying thing where a required PSN update was required to open Netflix.

        • Gideon Waxfarb

          Ummm, not sure how far back. Probably 4-5 months ago at least. It used to be only for PS Plus members, but then they made it available to everyone. But you have to explicitly turn it on in Settings > System Settings > [Automatic Download]. You tell it what time it should check. When it does this, the PS3 powers on by itself, and then powers back off.

          • AngryBadger

            Oh, I didn’t know they enabled it for everyone now! Gotta enable this lol. Thx :)

          • She_Beast

            I just bought my PS3 in December, and I could have sworn that it told me when I was setting it up (after doing the initial updates), it said automatic updates were a Plus feature. I’ll have to check into that again.

          • Gideon Waxfarb

            Just Google ”ps3 automatic updates for everyone’ – I promise I’m not making this up :)

  • The Narrator

    Nice

  • bull3946

    I have no fewer than 4 ways to watch Amazon Instant Streaming on my TV right now (blu-ray player, PS3, Xbox 360, built in TV app.) I have precisely zero ways to view Amazon Instant Streaming on my phone or tablet.

    So, it’s easy to guess what kind of announcement would get me to value Instant Streaming more. Hint, it isn’t yet another streaming device.

    • WalkerNA

      Just make it possible to watch via my already purchased & installed Chromecast and I’ll be a happy camper. That being said, I could use my Roku, Blu-ray Player, or XBox 360 as well.

    • http://chrischung110.blogspot.com/ Chris Chung

      Amazon is being like Microsoft by abandoning the tablets in hopes to boost Kindle Fire sales. It’s going to hurt them in long run.

    • j

      Agreed. It’s kinda ridiculous. I will also assume that this Amazon box won’t even be compatible with other streaming services so it will be of about 0% use for 99% of streaming customers, who like you, already have 50 methods to get Amazon on their TVs.

  • James_75

    Both my Samsung TV and Blu Ray player already do this…. guess it’s not for me.

  • AbbyZFresh

    Who cares. The only people buying this are Kindle owners.

    • Kyle

      And most of those Kindle Owners are young kids.