Amazon prepping Apple TV rival

With Amazon's streaming video service taking off in the US, could the retailer be gearing up to launch a Kindle TV?

Amazon could be preparing a rival to Apple TV to showcase its own brand video streaming offering.

According to business publication Forbes, industry analysts believe that Amazon will launch its own TV streaming hardware to counter the threat of iTunes and the Apple TV (which now accounts for 32% of US connected TV players, according to Strategy Analytics).

It would make sense. Although Amazon Instant Video is available in the US on Smart TVs and third-party hardware like TiVo, Roku and Google TV, Amazon doesn't have direct control over the user interface or content delivery – so device manufacturers could easily banish Amazon Video Streaming from their platforms if they felt the need.

And Amazon's already shown it's willing to muscle in on the hardware market with devices like the Kindle and Apple-baiting Kindle Fire – which can itself be used to watch Amazon Instant Video. So selling its own hardware to let customers watch Amazon Instant Video on the big screen isn't much of a stretch for the retailer.

Given that Apple's selling the Apple TV for a mere £99, it would be a challenge for Amazon to create a cheaper offering that undercuts the Apple TV as the Kindle Fire did to the iPad.

We're just hoping that the Amazon TV won't take as long as the Kindle Fire to make it across the pond.

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