Thanks to an Amazon job listing on GlassDoor, it’s now apparent that the Seattle-based e-commerce company is working on its own virtual reality platform.
This news stems from UploadVR, which originally noticed and reported on a senior software development manager position focused on virtual reality. Although the job posting opts to omit some crucial details, it does indicate that whatever Amazon has in store will emphasize “building the virtual reality experience within Amazon Video.”
Moreover, the listing adds that the company is planning on making “an ingestion and playback platform for virtual reality experiences,” meaning Amazon could effectively be working on a platform akin to Milk VR. With Netflix having already released its own Gear VR app and Hulu’s on its way, it makes sense that Amazon’s Prime Video service would make its way to a 360-degree format.
“The future will not be limited to passive 2D experiences,” the job posting continues. From that, we can infer that Amazon’s platform will exist in three dimensions, allowing it a clearcut advantage over competitors Netflix and Hulu.
It’s worth noting that Amazon Prime Instant video, like Hulu, is not yet available in North America outside of the United States. Historically speaking, Canada typically gets Amazon’s services much later than in the U.S., or sometimes not at all.
Google, too, is apparently working on some VR tech of its own, a unit with “solid plastic casing” in the spirit of Samsung’s Gear VR. Previously, the Alphabet subsidiary had released only an affordable entry-level HMD, appropriately named Google Cardboard, though it’s clearly time to offer up something a bit more sophisticated to align with the rest of the market.
Nevertheless, seeing yet another company as high-profile as Amazon enter the VR space presents a promising case for the emerging technology. It will be interesting to see how Prime Instant video compares to the efforts of its competitors.
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