2Amazon Fire TV: Little Box, Big Specs
Amazon Fire TV is a 0.7-inch square, now available for $99, that may change the set-top box market. Amazon says it runs a quad-core processor with more than three times the processing power and four times the memory of Apple TV, Chromecast or Roku 3. This enables it to be not just a great TV companion, but a gaming device too.
3Amazon Knows Customer Pain Points
Amazon’s digital video customer growth chart is steeper than Mount Everest. But in many cases there was a middle man—a middle product—between Amazon and those customers. (Google’s Chromecast is an Amazon top-seller.) Amazon was hearing customer paint points—such as that searching was too hard—and decided it could do better.
4Missionaries for the People
“We’ve been missionaries, inventing and simplifying for customers,” said Peter Larsen, Amazon’s vice president in charge of Kindle. This effort has included the Mayday button and leading the committee against the “Please turn off all electronic devices” announcement on flights. “What else can we do in the service of simplicity, so that you can sit back, relax and lose yourself in the director’s world?” Amazon wondered.
5What Fire TV Can Do
The answer, Amazon decided, was access to music (whatever you already own is cued up the moment you open the box), photos, games and Amazon’s own programming as well as others’. “You can watch ‘Alpha House’ plus ‘House of Cards.’ This is not a closed ecosystem,” said Larsen, referring to hit shows from Amazon and Netflix, respectively.
Amazon also included the Kindle feature FreeTime, which enables parents to fill up a section with age-appropriate content for kids, set time limits, and let them watch or play on their own (a password is required to exit FreeTime mode). “It prevents me from having to be a sheriff in the living room,” said Larsen.
8Amazon Game Studios
9Fire TV Remote Control
11Amazon and the Gaming Market
With Fire TV, Amazon is adding to its collection of hardware offerings that yield little if any profit, betting that the ongoing, online purchasing that the set-top encourages will pay off. The average price of an Amazon game will be $1.85. Following the announcement, analyst Avi Greengart, with Current Analysis, tweeted, “AVERAGE use of Xbox One is five. hours. a day.”