Amazon is throwing its hat into the set-top box ring as early as this holiday season, The Wall Street Journal reports. The forthcoming device will stream Amazon Instant Video content, which includes its growing roster of original programming.
According to WSJ, the device will also support third-party applications from various content providers — a function that has already been adopted by soon-to-be competitors Roku and Apple TV. Among the apps that would be offered via the device, gaming and music services are allegedly Amazon’s primary concern as of now. Sources have told WSJ that Amazon has given developers until mid-October to propose app concepts for the device.
Rumors of the Amazon set-top swirled around the web earlier this year, yet the device’s original fall release date was allegedly hindered due to development issues. While Amazon continues to expand its reach across the digital space, a set-top unit is crucial if the company wishes to conquer the living room. Already, direct Amazon Prime competitor Netflix is locking down deals with cable box providers in Europe with the hopes of reaching users in front of their TV screen.
Adding a Roku-like device to its library of technology, Amazon would no longer be reliant on other platforms — like Roku, Xbox 360, and PS4 — where Amazon Instant Video is accessed through an app. In this way, the company might also be able to develop an interface that, among other things, make it easier for users to find Amazon’s original content.