Instant Video adds AirPlay support, but Amazon may have bigger TV fish to fry

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Amazon Instant Video added Apple TV AirPlay support today, but the e-tailer may have another project cooking to take Apple's set-top head on in the living room.

Let's start with the Instant Video app update. Now app owners can stream content from their mobile device to a television via AirPlay. It's not an earth-shaking update, but a function Apple TV owners are sure to welcome.

Users were previously able to switch from watching content on their iPhone, iPad or iPod touch to viewing on a Kindle Fire HD, PS3, Xbox 360, PC, Mac or a number of connected TVs and Blu-ray players.

Throw Apple TV in the mix and you've got a growing Instant Video network that should force Hulu and Netflix to take notice.

Instant Video is free with an Amazon Prime subscription, though non-Prime members can buy or rent videos from the company's 140,000-strong catalog. Today's update also brings with it some new IMDB goodies, including cast and director info, ratings, "goofs," trivia and quotes.

Amazon TV coming in October?

While today's Instant Video update is an incremental step in Amazon stomp into the living room, AllThingsD has word that we could see the company seriously encroach on Apple TV's turf as soon as next month.

According to the site, Amazon is planning to release its own set-top box in the fall. Developer sources indicate the launch date won't happen until mid-October at the earliest, but that's really only a month away.

Amazon would join a growing connected TV space, shouldering next to the likes of not only Apple but Roku, Sony, Google, Microsoft and, eventually, Intel. With an Amazon phone likely in the works too, seems Amazon is preparing to hit a lot of top contenders where it hurts.

Michelle Fitzsimmons

Michelle was previously a news editor at TechRadar, leading consumer tech news and reviews. Michelle is now a Content Strategist at Facebook.  A versatile, highly effective content writer and skilled editor with a keen eye for detail, Michelle is a collaborative problem solver and covered everything from smartwatches and microprocessors to VR and self-driving cars.