Amazon could stick it to Chromecast with its own streaming TV dongle

Amazon sticking gadget
Taking cues from Google Chromecast

Amazon is expected to launch a streaming device that beams video and game content to TVs, but it may come in the form of a small streaming stick, not a full-sized set-top box.

The online retailer is preparing to launch the diminutive-sized streaming dongle with a design that resembles Google Chromecast, according to TechCrunch, citing anonymous sources.

That differs from previous reports that indicated Amazon was developing a more generic-looking box, codenamed Firetube, that resembled the Apple TV or Roku 3.

Such is the trend, however. The thumb-drive-sized Roku Streaming Stick is serving up a similar streaming-on-a-stick approach next month and it too plugs into any HDMI port.

OnLive-style streaming

While Amazon may be taking cues from others on the design of its unofficial streaming device, it could easily set a trend among dongles with video game streaming functionality.

It is said to go as far as supporting full PC titles in an effort to better compete with PS4 and Xbox One in the living room, according to TechCrunch, this time citing a single unnamed source.

The service is being compared to the ill-fated OnLive cloud gaming platform in which the internet and remote processors did all of the heavy lifting. Users needed minimal hardware.

Add in the leaked Amazon controller, and this bundle could bring something considerably new to the front room with a cheaper entry ticket than any PlayStation Now streaming hardware.

There's no Amazon streaming dongle release date tied to today's report, but with Chromecast expanding its footprint to the UK and the Roku Streaming Stick set for April, it shouldn't be long.

Matt Swider