Bloomberg Businessweek is reporting that Amazon will soon be announcing its own streaming box to pair up with its Amazon Instant Video and video on demand.
According to Bloomberg's three unnamed sources, the box will be dropping sometime this fall. It will hook up directly to your TV (as streaming boxes tend to do) and provide access to both Amazon's Video on Demand marketplace as well as the Instant Video service that comes free with an Amazon Prime subscription.
This rumor comes on the heels of Amazon's recent release of 14 original series pilots, which shows its commitment not only to video, but to original video. It only makes sense that the same people who brought you Amazon-centric content delivery devices like the Kindle and the Kindle Fire would want a piece of the set-top box pie as well. And given how everything else in the Kindle line eschews hardware profit in favor of piping sweet, sweet Amazon content directly to your face, you can bet this sucker will be cheap.
The world of streaming boxes is definitely a crowded place so you kind of have to wonder if we need one more. With offerings that range from Roku, to Apple TV, to game consoles like the Xbox 360 and PS3, the bases are pretty well covered. Nothing is certain yet, but Amazon's contribution to the market will probably rely heavily on consolidating the whole streaming experience, from the point of purchase all the way to your TV with a walled—but not impenetrable—ecosystem, probably based on forked Android. Oh and did we mention it will probably be dirt cheap? It will probably be dirt cheap.
Among the many questions is whether or not this box would let services like Netflix and Hulu on board, and if the Kindle Fire is any indication, the answer is yes. There's also no certainty that the box would bear the Kindle name, but a "Kindle TV" would fit just nicely into the "Here are all your Amazon goodies" ecosystem created by the original Kindle reader and advanced by the Fire. But when it comes to all the juicy specifics, we'll just have to wait and see. [Bloomberg]