Amazon is developing its operating system, which is set to replace Android.
Amazon is discreetly working on a proprietary operating system code-named “Vega,” initially targeting its Fire TV devices, with plans to expand its range of smart displays. This revelation comes from Janko Roettgers in his Lowpass newsletter. Vega will debut on Fire TV streaming devices as early as next year.
Interestingly, Amazon’s latest Echo Show 5 features this new OS, labelled as “OS 1.1,” marking a departure from the usual Fire OS. This change signifies the introduction of a completely new platform, as evidenced by the stark contrast to the Echo Show 8’s Fire OS 220.127.116.11. Visually and functionally, Vega OS closely resembles the Fire OS it’s set to replace.
Roettgers, utilizing various sources and Amazon’s job listings, discovered that Vega’s development is considerably advanced. This new Linux-based OS is a significant move from Android, the basis of Amazon’s customized Fire OS. Amazon has informed some partners about this impending transition.
The launch of its operating system represents a fresh start for Amazon. This means streaming app developers must create new versions for this platform. However, given the Fire TV’s substantial market presence – having sold over 200 million devices globally as of March – developers might be motivated to adapt.
Owning an operating system allows Amazon to maximize ad revenues from its Fire TV smart displays and other devices. It also enables Amazon to update its software independently, a notable change from relying on older versions of Google’s Android system. However, Fire TV users have raised concerns about potentially losing advanced features like sideloading in the new OS.
At a recent hardware event, Amazon showcased new Fire TV OS features, including improved voice search capabilities aided by AI and a ‘continue watching’ feature integrating content from various streaming services. Additionally, Amazon expanded its Ambient Experience to more devices, allowing the display of widgets and information when Fire TV products are not in use.
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