With things like Netflix and Hulu Plus already on the Xbox 360, we expected Xbox's slogan of "Xbox = Entertainment" to really take hold. Recently, we were surprised by the large list of media partners added to the platform and even heard that Skype would show up on the next-gen console.
This week, right before LA Gaming Week (and E3), Amazon is looking to take a stab at the marketshare that Netflix and Hulu Plus have over the console.
The company announced that there is now an Amazon Instant Video app for the 360 that will allow Xbox LIVE Gold members to find and watch all of their favorite Instant Video using Kinectability. While using Kinect to access all of Amazon's great video selections is certainly a cool thing, it's their 17,000 shows and movies that are available in their Prime Instant Video service that really make the app stand out. Even better, Amazon Prime members can get all of this content at no extra charge.
Customers can now watch the latest movies and TV episodes on the Xbox 360 video game and entertainment system from Microsoft and use Kinect for Xbox 360 to find and play videos with the wave of a hand or sound of their voice
Prime members can instantly stream more than 17,000 movies and TV episodes to their Xbox 360 console with shows such as 24, Downton Abbey and Chappelle Show, and
movies like Mission Impossible 3 and Forrest Gump.
For those without Prime, it's $79 a year and gives you not only the video services but access to exclusive two-day shipping on all Amazon.com purchases. For those without Xbox LIVE Gold, get out from whatever rock you're living under and pick up a subscription and a new console while you're at it.
This now puts Amazon on the same pedestal as Netflix and Hulu Plus as now all three have the same console capabilities across the 360 and PS3. However, for Amazon, their app will include integration for the Kindle Fire. Amazon's VP, Anthony Bay, said,
Our integration with Kinect for Xbox 360 lets customers play and search for videos with the wave of a hand or the sound of their voice, and our Whispersync technology allows customers to seamlessly switch between watching on their Kindle Fire and their Xbox 360 console, without losing their place. Also, Watchlist is a great new feature that lets customers keep a running queue of videos they want to see in the future.
The full press release can be found below.
SEATTLE-(BUSINESS WIRE)-May. 29, 2012- (NASDAQ: AMZN) - Amazon.com, Inc. and Microsoft Corp. today introduced a new Amazon Instant Video app for Xbox LIVE Gold subscribers that gives customers access to movies and TV episodes on their Xbox 360 console. The app also offers access to Prime Instant Video, a service with more than 17,000 movies and TV episodes available to Prime members at no additional cost. Customers who are Xbox LIVE Gold subscribers can find the free Amazon Instant Video app in the Xbox LIVE Marketplace for Xbox 360. For more information on how to watch those videos on Xbox 360 visit, http://amazon.com/instantvideo/xbox.
"Amazon Instant Video on the Xbox 360 console is among one of the most requested video features from our customers, so we are excited to offer yet another way for customers to enjoy Amazon Instant Video," said Anthony Bay, Amazon.com vice president for video. "With Amazon Instant Video on Xbox 360, Xbox LIVE Gold members can start enjoying new release movies, current TV episodes and Prime Instant Video right away. Our integration with Kinect for Xbox 360 lets customers play and search for videos with the wave of a hand or the sound of their voice, and our Whispersync technology allows customers to seamlessly switch between watching on their Kindle Fire and their Xbox 360 console, without losing their place. Also, Watchlist is a great new feature that lets customers keep a running queue of videos they want to see in the future."
"Working with Amazon.com marks a significant milestone in our mission to make the entertainment you love more amazing on Xbox," said Ross Honey, general manager of Xbox LIVE Entertainment and Advertising, Microsoft Corp. "By bringing the Amazon Instant Video app to Xbox LIVE and adding voice search and voice control through the magic of Kinect, we're transforming the way people discover and experience entertainment."
Customers can visit the Amazon Website to shop for any of the more than 120,000 movies and TV episodes. Purchased or rented movies and TV episodes appear automatically in Your Video Library on the Amazon Instant Video app for Xbox 360. Amazon Instant Video offers the latest hit movies like Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, We Bought a Zoo, and The Grey, and popular TV shows Mad Men, Fringe, Vampire Diaries and Once Upon A Time.
Prime Instant Video includes hit TV shows like Glee, Downton Abbey and Sons of Anarchy and classic movies such as Office Space, The Graduate and Brokeback Mountain. In addition to receiving free two-day shipping on millions of items and access to thousands of books from the Kindle Owners' Lending Library, Prime members can instantly stream more than 17,000 TV episodes and movies, all for just $79 a year. If you are not a Prime member you can start a free one-month trial today.
The new Amazon Instant Video app for Xbox 360 includes:
• The ability to browse and play videos with the Xbox 360 remote control or Kinect voice and gesture commands.
• Instant streaming of thousands of high-definition movies and TV episodes that start and resume in just seconds.
• Watchlist for Amazon Instant Video - allows customers to create a list of things they want to watch, and find those movies and TV episodes easily.
• Whispersync - lets customers seamlessly switch from one device to another. Customers can start streaming a movie on Kindle Fire, then pick up right where they left off on their Xbox 360 console and avoid the frustration of having to find their spot.
•Your Video Library - customers can access their purchases from Amazon Instant Video on the Xbox 360 or any of the hundreds of other devices enabled for Amazon Instant Video.
Can this be the move that propels Instant Video to the #1 spot, or will Amazon's service really just be a bonus add-on to their Prime members? Will you sign up? Let us know in the comments section below.