Bloomberg Businessweek reports that Amazon is planning to introduce a television set-top box this fall, according to three people familiar with the project who aren’t authorized to discuss it. Details are limited, but the device is being developed by Amazon’s Lab126 division, which created the Kindle family of products.
Amazon already offers a lineup of Android-powered tablets, and smartphones are rumored to be on the way, so it makes perfect sense that they would want to get try and take over your TV. The rumored Amazon set-top box would prominently feature Amazon’s Video on Demand store and their their Instant Video service, which is a free bonus for subscribers of Amazon Prime.
The new box should have no shortage of original, exclusive content. Just last week 14 shows debuted on the new Amazon Original TV Pilots from Amazon Studios. Amazon is monitoring the reviews and popularity of each pilot and will let the audience decide which shows become series. There are also 25 movies currently in development and in the processes of being tested with audiences.
We assume that Amazon’s set-top box will also run a version of Android, so we expect the device to have access to the growing Amazon Appstore for Android. Developers would need to optimize their apps for larger displays, but if anyone could convince them to do so it would be Amazon.
Hints suggest that Google TV will get a major refresh at Google IO next month, but Google’s TV platform has been sorely lacking in exciting new features and developer support. Competition is a good thing, so hopefully Amazon and Google will push each other to deliver more premium experiences.
What features and experiences would you like to see from an Amazon Kindle TV box?