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April 2, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Amazon has become the latest company to enter the hardware side of the video-streaming business, unveiling a settop box called Amazon fireTV that will compete with Roku, AppleTV, and Google ChromeCast. The announcement of the new device was made today (Wednesday) by Peter Larsen, who heads Amazon’s Kindle operations. He noted that Amazon has been selling millions of the competing streaming settop boxes, and he suggested that one of the reasons Amazon entered the fray was that its own streaming movies and TV shows can’t be viewed on TV sets via Apple TV. “It drives me bananas that I can’t watch my Prime Instant Video on my Apple TV,” Larsen said. He ticked off a list of video websites that can be viewed on TV sets with Amazon fireTV: Netflix, Hulu, WatchESPN, MLB, Crackle, Vimeo, NBA, and YouTube. Conspicuously not mentioned was Apple’s iTunes. Larsen said that the device is three times as fast as its competition’s and that the search function is voice activated.