While the invite fails to concretely state that the company will be releasing its long awaited streaming hardware for the home, the invite does picture an armchair in someone’s home and a bowl of popcorn. Having covered this eagerly-awaited device for some time, it’s difficult not to rush to judgement and the suggestion that it has finally arrived.
Next Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014 will play host to the event to be held in New York City at 11:00 a.m. EDT. The invitation – beyond the imagery – promises an “update for our video business.” While it may be too late for Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) to make an impact with such competitors as Roku, Apple TV, and Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)’s Chromecast, presumably Amazon will offer something that the others don’t. Alternatively, for many Roku is a mystery and Amazon is a household name.
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Amazon finally ready?
The invitation truly gave nothing away so it’s time to speculate and ask questions. Is it a box? Is it a dongle similar to the Chromecast? How much will it cost? Will it run on a “forked” version of Android just like the Kindle? Last October, the newest line of Kindles were released and Amazon has been largely quiet since then minus the raising of Amazon Prime subscription to $99 from $79 per year.
Google Play store?
A “forked” version of Android would not allow access to the Google Play store, and that is precisely what Amazon might want. Amazon has been missing out on revenues from both advertising and app downloads in the living room, something that Jeff Bezos is tremendously interested in achieving.
While the device will likely be shipped with access to Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX), Pandora Media Inc (NYSE:P), and Hulu out of the box, is that enough for Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) to change the way video is watched? Either way count on us to be breaking the news next week the moment it is indeed news rather than additional guessing.
Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) built itself from its book business, they’ve shown there is little they can’t sell since. Whether this is the case with streaming video is a coin flip.