According to Bloomberg Business Week, Amazon is looking at delivering a net-top this fall. According to the report:
The set-top box is being developed by Amazon’s Lab126 division in Cupertino, Calif., which has toyed with building TV-connected devices for several years, the people familiar with the effort say. The project is being run by Malachy Moynihan, a former vice president of emerging video products at Cisco Systems (CSCO) who worked on the networking company’s various consumer video initiatives.
A few quick thoughts.
Now, a couple interesting things. First, Malachy was the guy who drove Linksys’s engineering and product vision before it got, well, mucked up by the Pure Digital folks (i.e. Flip). He’s a true technologist with serious digital home and networking cred, so he’s probably a good choice to drive hardware for Amazon.
As for what an Amazon net-top/service package will look like, I’m sure we’ll see something similar to Kindle: Likely built upon Android, curated focus with an emphasis on rewarding Amazon-centric consumers (i.e. a big Prime hook). I imagine that there will be strong up-sells to premium bundles, highly competitive pricing on digital sell through for new home-release windowed content where they don’t have bundling/all-you-can-eat rights, as well as strong featuring of the company’s own studio-driven content.
Net-net, I’m not surprised. The TV space is really heating up, and Amazon is not one to let a digital content market left to others.