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Where On Earth Is Amazon Video For Apple TV?

A scene from "Transparent," an original series on Amazon Video
Connected Theater
May 2, 2016

The fourth-generation Apple TV is a fantastic set-top box, with plenty of content providers to choose from. One notable exception, though, is a perplexing one: Amazon Video. There’s no apparent reason for the streaming video service’s absence from the Apple TV … or is there?

We had some hope for Amazon Video to finally arrive on Apple TV several months ago. An Amazon employee supposedly told a customer that the app would be released to tvOS within a matter of weeks. Unfortunately, that never happened.

The most likely reason Amazon Video hasn’t arrived on Apple TV yet is the 30 percent cut Cupertino gets off in-app purchases. While one part of Amazon Video is the all-you-can-eat streaming option, there’s also the option to rent or purchase movies and television shows. Amazon gets around that on iOS by having customers purchase or rent their media on the website first, then download it to their devices.

Since the Apple TV doesn’t have a Web browser, trying to rely on that workaround becomes even more cumbersome than it already is. Amazon is probably wanting to negotiate a lower percentage to give to Apple, or else find a new and ingenious way for customers to buy their content straight from within the app itself.

Until Amazon figures out how to get its streaming video service on the tvOS App Store in a way it finds favorable, there’s still an option for Apple TV owners who want to watch “Transparent” or something else from the Prime library. AirPlay works quite well for beaming your streaming media from your iOS device to the Apple TV, as long as the devices are connected to the same network.