Amazon’s set-top Apple TV competitor looks primed for an April 2 launch

amazon sets april 2nd for unveiling apple tv competitor

This year has been a busy one for Amazon, so far. The media giant has already unveiled more original content for its Amazon Instant Video service, and teased at a Chromecast-esque dongle in the works. Today, the company announced an invitation to an “Update” on its video business set for April 2nd, which many predict will offer the unveiling of its answer to the Apple TV and Roku devices — Amazon’s very own set-top box.

Amazon invite

The device has been highly anticipated since Amazon first mentioned news of its development just over a year ago. And in less than a week, the world may finally be able see what the company has spent all this time developing.

The set-top box, initially slated for release this month, is positioned to compete directly with Roku, Google’s Chromecast dongle, and Apple TV, which secured its spot in the living room streaming hierarchy with $1 billion in revenue last year.

Similar to Roku’s game plan, revealed earlier this month, Amazon appears to have a chosen a dual-device strategy for taking on its rivals — rather than betting on either the dongle or the bulkier set-top box, the company chose to develop both, and allow its customers to choose their preferred streaming method. Google and Apple acolytes currently have only one choice.

Amazon has indicated that its box will have third-party app compatibility for services such as Netflix and Hulu Plus, possibly nabbing more than just its own Amazon Instant Video users. The box will likely come with its own remote control, but Amazon could also just let users launch apps from mobile devices by including some form of send-to-screen technology, effectively making any tablet or smartphone a potential remote.

Many of these questions won’t have definitive answers until (we hope) April 2 — a short wait considering the preceding year’s rumors and pushed back release dates. Stay tuned as we cover the press release in detail next week.


Netflix’s latest price increase heralds the end of streaming’s golden age

Netflix’s recent price rise is just the latest in a string of signs that streaming’s golden age is nearly over. As more services enter the fray, content will be further partitioned, signaling the end of streaming’s good old days.
Home Theater

Plex is the latest player to contemplate the subscription streaming game

With massive reach thanks to its client app being supported virtually every media device on the planet, Plex is now looking at the future of its media curation platform. A future that may include free and subscription services.
Home Theater

From the Roku Ultra to the Fire TV Cube, these are the best streaming devices

There are more options for media streamers than ever, so it’s more difficult to pick the best option. But that’s why we're here. Our curated list of the best streaming devices will get you online in no time.
Home Theater

Want to mirror your smartphone or tablet onto your TV? Here's how

A vast arsenal of devices exists to allow sending anything on your mobile device to your TV. Our in-depth guide shows you how to mirror content from your smartphone or tablet to the big screen from virtually any device available.
Home Theater

New TV? Here's where to go to watch the best 4K content available

Searching for content for your new 4K UHD TV? Look no further. We have every major source of the best 4K content, along with the cost, hardware requirements, and features that make each service worth a look.
Home Theater

What are HDMI ARC and eARC? Here’s how they can simplify your home theater

HDMI ARC is one of the coolest TV features at your disposal. But if you're like most folks, you have no idea how it works, if you even know what it is at all. Here's our primer on HDMI ARC, as well as the next generation technology, eARC.
Home Theater

Yamaha’s MusicCast Vinyl 500 turntable spreads analog joy throughout your home

It can be tough to listen to your favorite analog tunes anywhere besides the room where your turntable is located. With its MusicCast Vinyl 500 turntable, Yamaha allows you to stream your tunes throughout your home.
Home Theater

Looking to cut cable? Here’s everything you need to know about Pluto TV

Pluto TV offers plenty of entertainment in a fashion similar to live internet TV services, only at no cost — you don’t even need to register. Too good to be true? Here’s everything you need to know.

Need a smart speaker? Amazon knocks $50 off Sonos Beam soundbar with Alexa

If you're looking to add some oomph to your home audio setup, then through February 3, the Alexa-enabled Sonos Beam is on sale for $50 off, bringing this excellent smart sound bar down to just $349 on Amazon.
Home Theater

Walmart abandons its plans for a streaming Netflix killer

Rumored plans for a Walmart owned, Vudu-labeled Netflix streaming killer have been shelved according to a new report from CNBC. The billions it would have needed to invest in order to compete apparently gave the mega retailer cold feet.
Home Theater

Dolby’s secret recording studio app may soon exit stealth mode

In secret testing since June, Dolby's stealth recording and social network app may soon be ready to make an appearance. Dolby 234 blends unique noise-canceling tech with Instagram-like audio filters.
Home Theater

Here are some common AirPods problems, and how to fix them

Apple’s AirPods are among the best fully wireless earbuds we’ve seen, but they’re not perfect. If you’re having trouble, take a look at our guide to the most common problems and what you can do to fix them.

Here’s a look at the hottest 4K TV deals for January 2019

There's no doubt that a good 4K smart TV is the best way to take your home entertainment setup to the next level to enjoy all your favorite shows, movies, and games in glorious Ultra HD. We've got the best 4K TV deals right here.

Amazon knocks $50 off the Sonos Beam soundbar and smart speaker

If you're looking to add some oomph to your home audio setup, then through February 3, the Alexa-enabled Sonos Beam is on sale for $50 off, bringing this excellent sound bar down to just $349 on Amazon.