Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) is holding a press event Thursday in Los Angeles, presumably to announce the latest incarnation of the Kindle Fire, of which the company sold out completely last week. There has been a lot of speculation that the company is likely to introduce an upgraded Kindle Fire, and perhaps a larger model to more directly compete with the iPad by Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) – just a few days before Apple is expected to reveal its iPad Mini to more directly compete with the Fire and the Nexus 7 by Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG).
While it has seemed pretty certain that two new tablets are likely on the Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) agenda Thursday, there has been some recent buzz that this unveiling event may also include a device that could bring Amazon.com into the realm of digital television. This speculation follows on the heels of the company’s attempt to buy Web TV-box maker Roku earlier this year, and it seems to translate into Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) either possibly developing its own set-top TV box – or perhaps some Kindle Fire docking device that would allow video streaming from the Fire to appear on a TV.
Other than the buzz, there has been no hard evidence that any such device was coming on-line, so this would be an unveiling that would be a true Hollywood ending. Nonetheless, Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN), with its previous pursuit of Roku (which was purchased by News Corp., the parent company of Fox News and the Wall Street Journal) is right along with Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) knows that the next technology “space race” is in digital television, where Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) launched its Sputnik, the Xbox, several years ago to gain a foothold in American family rooms. Chances are Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) will offer its TV device soon in order to stay in the race for TV market share.
Whether KindleTV is in the short-term future is a matter of speculation at this point. But certainly the idea of Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) expanding its product offerings to another platform would seem sensible at this point in the technology race. Investors in Amazon.com stock will be watching Thursday’s unveil event with interest, including hedge-fund manager Ken Fisher of Fisher Asset Management.