Today, Amazon announced its television-streaming device, the Fire TV. It’s a set-top box that lets you watch videos and play games, and it starts shipping today for $US99, a price that’s on par with Apple TV but almost three times the price of Google’s $US35 Chromecast.
Mark Hoelzel, research analyst for Business Insider Intelligence, predicts that Amazon will sell 5.8 million Fire TVs in the US this year. Those numbers would give it about one-fifth of the streaming-device market share by sales, putting it behind only the Apple TV.
Business Insider Intelligence’s forecast is based on the trajectory of Kindle Fire sales, alongside the trends it’s been tracking closely in the streaming-device market.
How could Amazon capture such a significant market share when it’s the newest player in the market?
It already has a bunch of original content (with more on the way this spring) and a built-in audience for the Amazon Fire TV. At least 20 million people currently pay for Amazon Prime, which, besides the two-day shipping, gives them unlimited access to its vast catalogue of digital content. For anyone with a Prime subscription, there’s huge appeal in getting the Amazon Fire TV: they will be able to get all the content that they already have access to onto their TVs extremely more easily. Plus, of course, other apps — like Hulu and Netflix — will be available on the Fire TV, too.
Here’s Business Insider Intelligence’s predictions for streaming-device sales:
Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through his personal investment company Bezos Expeditions.