Rumor Mill: Amazon developing Android-powered gaming console
Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) reportedly is at work on a gaming console powered by Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android mobile operating system, with a retail launch expected in time for the 2013 holiday shopping season.
Citing sources with knowledge of Amazon's developmental efforts, GameInformer reports the console will run games available for download from the online retailer's Appstore for Android and will include a dedicated controller. GamesBeat notes it has also heard rumblings of the Amazon console, with one developer source revealing that Amazon is actively soliciting content for the hardware, with an emphasis on casual games. Other sources told GamesBeat they question whether Amazon is serious about bringing the console to market, however.
Amazon has not responded to requests for comment.
Amazon launched its Amazon Game Studios development unit last August, debuting with the release of the social game Living Classics for Facebook (NASDAQ:FB). Air Pirates, available for mobile devices running Android and Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iOS, followed in the fall: A version of the title optimized for Amazon's Android-based Kindle Fire tablet leverages the company's GameCircle social gaming platform, which tracks achievements and high scores. Amazon widened GameCircle support to all Android devices last month.
Earlier this year, The Wall Street Journal reported Google is expanding the Android OS to gaming consoles as well as smart wristwatches and media streaming devices in an effort to combat similar products that archrival Apple may release in the future. Google is also seeking to fend off startup Ouya, which in June began selling an Android-powered console and game controller priced at $99. Sources said Google is designing the Android-powered products in-house and plans to market them itself, targeting a fall 2013 commercial launch for at least one of the new devices.
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