The jungle drums are beating loudly at the moment in the media industry that Amazon, the world’s largest online retailer is about to launch a new television set-top box for the streaming of internet video. Industry insiders are claiming that the device is due to be launched later this year and that it will connect to people’s television allowing them to access Amazon’s expanding video services, which includes their Video on Demand store.
The new offering would see Amazon move into closer competition with Apple who currently have their own television set-top box product through Apple.TV. Amazon are probably best known for their Kindle electronic book reader and that it is assumed they will leverage this name for their new set-top box by branding it Kindle TV. Many of the existing set-top boxes in the market are already offering access to Amazon’s video catalogue, but it is felt that by building its own device, Amazon can offer more of its huge content more directly to consumers. Amazon’s set-top box would include programming from the company’s on-demand video service, which includes newer films and TV shows, and the instant-video service provided free to members of the Prime two-day shipping service.
Amazon has been rapidly expanding its efforts in the video arena. Earlier this week it introduced several television pilots, which it financed, and it is now monitoring customer feedback to decide which ones to produce as full series. The company has also paid to secure exclusive streaming rights to hit shows such as “Downton Abbey”.