Amazon Plans Free Video-Streaming Service, WSJ Reports

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All signs point to Amazon announcing its streaming device at a NYC event next week. Not a lot is known about it, but a report from the WSJ today sheds a little light on Amazon’s overall strategy, which will reportedly include a free, ad-supported streaming service.

According to this report, this service will not just be limited to Amazon Prime subscribers, but rather open to anyone willing to watch ads. Like on Hulu.

If this report is true, it could give Amazon the ace it needs and the wire snippers consumers have longed for to finally cut the cable.

The WSJ states that the service will feature original and licensed programming. Just how much content it will include is not known.

It’s unclear if this service will launch alongside Amazon’s livingroom streamer, but it’s logical and would give the product a big boost. The device is rumored to launch with a broad support of streaming services including Netflix, Pandora and HBO Go. But that might not be enough in a marketplace already saturated with streaming devices. It needs something special.

However, if Amazon can pull off producing a Hulu-like service and bundle it with a low-cost, low-impact media stream, it would be an instant hit. Suddenly, consumers would have a legitimate alternative to pay TV. Just buy this Amazon streamer and watch TV content supported by ads. Easy.

If any company can pull this off, it’s Amazon.