Is Amazon planning to launch a TV set-top box?

A couple of years ago, the trend in televisions was 3D, but that died down quickly. Now the current trend is the so-called "smart TV", either as a stand alone product or via a set-top box. Now there's a rumor that Amazon will jump into this market with a TV set-top box of its own.

Bloomberg reports, via unnamed sources, that the box will stream video from Amazon's Video on Demand and Instant Video services. It is supposed to be launching later this fall but the report did not hint at what the price of the box might be. Officially, Amazon has not revealed any such plans. However, the story claims that the box is being developed at Amazon's Lab126 division in Cupertino, California with team members that used to work at Cisco, ReplayTV, Vudu and TiVo.

Game consoles like Microsoft's Xbox 360 already have some set-top box features and rumors claim that the next version of the Xbox will work with a regular cable box to help control TV features. Companies like Apple, Sony and Roku are selling TV set-top boxes that stream Internet-based content and Intel has confirmed it is working on some kind of Internet-based cable TV hardware and software service for a launch later this year.

Source: Bloomberg | Image via Apple

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yeah all these "set top boxes" are nice and all, but for those of us who have cable tv they are just another box that you stack ontop of the cable box... how about we start building in standardized cable labs tech into these so you can watch cable channels? you know... put a cablecard slot in them?... that way we don't have to rent a box form Comcast, twc, etc in the USA since we can't buy those boxes in the USA thank you FCC..... almost littearly the only choices we have that don't require a computer or external cable company box is well tivo... you have hdhomerun and centon, but those require a media center pc or similar to watch tv....

deadonthefloor said,

What about IPTV?
We don't use your cable co's tech.

and "we" is? CableLabs is an international standard, they created things like DOCSIS and PacketCable, to say "we dont use your cable co's tech" is a little odd considering pretty much the whole world uses cablelab's tech...

CableCard is a cablelabs tech spec... sure its used only in the USA but it's still a spec as much as DVB is in Europe... you make a designed box for each region

IPTV barely exists in the USA, cable is sent by QAM carriers on a cable line, the problem in the USA is there is no way to buy a cable box besides Tivo