Thursday, April 25, 2013

Kindle News: Kindle TV? Likely. Apple + Android (Kindle too) market share changes, smartphones and tablets.

Kindle TV ?

The news on my TV this Tuesday morning brought speculation about Amazon's apparently coming Kindle TV (that's Bloomberg News's name, not Amazons), to go up against Apple TV, and Roku 3 streaming TV boxes this year.

  And iTechPost's Jordan Mammo, whose Kindle Fire combo-graphic is used here, points us to the Bloomberg story by Brad Stone, about Amazon's "plans to release a television set-top box that would stream video over the internet into customer's homes," according to people "with knowledge of the matter."  This hasn't been confirmed by Amazon and it's not their style to do that ahead of time.

  It brought to mind that (though not the same thing) I can stream video from my Kindle Fire HDs, including Amazon Instant Prime and any webpages I vist now, by just hooking up the HDMI cable to an HDTV.
 But this kind of thing is more easily done via a box like an Apple TV or a Roku 3.
 Mammo also mentions rumors of an Xbox Mini for streaming of video content.

  The Kindle TV would likely prioritize Amazon's own services and allow it to highlight more of its own content although such a device would not be of general interest unless it streamed almost everything the other boxes offer.  People would expect the usual competitive pricing.

  Stone's source article says that the device is due later this year and is being developed by Amazon's Lab 126, which is not new to the technology.

  Stone adds that Amazon "has climbed 7.2 percent this year through yesterday, compared with a 24 percent decline for Apple" (subject of next topic here).

  Amazon has been very aggressive in the streaming television area, as shown in the TV pilots they're producing and offering for free viewing with customer feedback requested, and the payments "to secure exclusive streaming rights to hit shows" like "Downton Abbey."

  Wired's Roberto Baldwin would like a couple of extras:
1. Place a cable-card slot in the Kindle TV, "Amazon could market the device as an all-in-one media center"
2. Add a cloud-based DVR

Apple's sudden perception problem

Besides the news that its stock gave back 40% of its gains over the last 10 years and the several stories a few days ago that the iPhone was losing marketshare rather heavily to Samsung, Forbes's story by contributor Todd Hixon says "iPhone lost the smart phone market share war two years ago, and Android is now well in the lead.

See also:
  . Washington Post on this.
  . The more colorful Daily Mail Online, UK

  Other stories show market share in tablets decreasing too, but Apple is still far in the lead when it comes to tablets, and while they are losing market share in that area too, their sales of these have gone up.

  Added problem if sources for the situation are correct:
  TGDaily reports that "According to Chinese media, Apple returned as many as five million iPhones to Foxconn due to various technical problems" and that "the total number of returned phones may be as high as eight million."

  I see stories that Samsung is having problems with production because the demand is so high.

  Apple's problems are relevant here for a few reasons.  Amazon's Kindle ecosystem is one reason for a decrease in the tablets area.  Although Amazon's market share of tablets is still very small, it's growing.  They're also getting into the smartphone area, and you know that they'll keep pricing low on that and probably make deals for competitive first-year data plans.

Check often: Temporarily-free recently published Kindle books
  Guide to finding Free Kindle books and Sources.  Top 100 free bestsellers.  Liked-books under $1
UK-Only: recently published free books, bestsellers, or £5 Max ones
    Also, UK customers should see the UK store's Top 100 free bestsellers.

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  1. Presumably this 'Amazon TV' will include Amazon MP3 functionality. But I'd rather this found its way onto the Sony Blu-Ray player which is what we mostly use for Amazon Instant Video consumption (as well as netflix, pandora, etc.). As it is, I'm unlikely to add Amazon TV (or any other box like Roku or Apple TV) as this would probably necessitate a cascade of component upgrades (to handle more video and audio sources).

    1. My LG one has Netflix, Pandora, Youtube, Vudu, etc but not Amazon Instant Video. I have a Roku I've never opened, weirdly enough. I also have a multi HDMI connector box for sharing. It'll be interesting how they make it enticing enough to make it worth buying with so much available.


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