Remember the ‘Firetube” name we told you Amazon registered not long ago? It seems there might be something coming this holiday season from everyone’s favorite online retailer. The Wall Street Journal is reporting that “people briefed on the company’s plans” say Amazon will release a Roku-esque streaming media player this year.
If true, this pits Amazon against a host of other set-top boxes and plug-in dongles. Most notably the Roku, which Amazon currently makes their content available for. An Amazon branded streaming device would also explain why Amazon has been mum about bringing Prime to the Chromecast, which is highly desirable for fans of Google’s powerhouse dongle.
According to the sources, the Amazon media player would even resemble a Roku box, and could offer games -- like Roku does. Of course, this would all tie into Amazon’s Prime membership, and if Amazon history tells us anything, it won’t offer any outside services like Netflix. Amazon is keen to sell their own tablets, and that strategy may be coming to living rooms as well.
Codenamed “Cinnamon”, there was no hard date for release, or even specifics on pricing from the WSJ sources. If Amazon plans on entering the living room with their own device, they may be a little late to the game; between the Roku, Chromecast, Apple TV, and On-Demand content from cable providers, the space is limited.