Amazon not releasing app for Apple TV - partial refund of Prime membership

spacemnspiff

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Original poster
Feb 11, 2009
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I got tired of the game Amazon is playing by not releasing the Apple TV app. I asked for a partial refund of my prime membership, after much back and forth, Amazon and I settled on $35 refund for this year, and made it clear that I will expect this refund for next year as well if Amazon doesn't release an app and discriminates against my choice of streaming device.

I have saved the transcript of the chat for future reference.
 

d21mike

macrumors 68040
Jul 11, 2007
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353
Torrance, CA
Good for you. They really should remove Prime Video Cost from the annual subscription for those that only want Prime for Shipping due to the restrictions on how Prime Video can be used.
 
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nburwell

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May 6, 2008
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While I don't have issues using AirPlay to stream Amazon Video from my iPad/iPhone to my ATV, it really would be nice if Amazon released a dedicated tvOS app. It just seems silly for me to purchase an Amazon Fire TV Stick or a cheap Roku to natively stream Amazon Video from that device.

Good for you, OP!
 

swingandamiss

macrumors member
Nov 22, 2016
31
14
Anyone know their reasoning for not releasing an App? Seems like such an obvious next step that there must be a very good reason for it. $35 is a nice chunk of change though OP, congrats.
 

d21mike

macrumors 68040
Jul 11, 2007
3,299
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Torrance, CA
Anyone know their reasoning for not releasing an App? Seems like such an obvious next step that there must be a very good reason for it. $35 is a nice chunk of change though OP, congrats.
I say there is no reason, but if you search around here you will get many opinions. I think the main reason is that Amazon would want to sell and rent movies and tv shows in the app but would not want to pay Apple a fee. But most are saying that they provide an iPad App with the exact same restriction so should not matter.
 

benjitek

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Sep 23, 2012
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...Anyone know their reasoning for not releasing an App...
Their have a few reasons -- like revenue sharing. If a tvOS app allowed users to subscribe to Prime, 30% would go to Apple -- same for any non-Prime video rentals or purchases. With iOS, you're directed to the website for video purchase transactions or new Prime subscriptions to avoid the revenue-split, but there's no Safari on an AppleTV. Apple has recently modified the revenue model by reducing the rate to 15% if the service provider hooks up with the new TV App. I doubt Amazon will find that reason to launch a tvOS app, hopefully I'm wrong.

If you do an internet search on the subject, you'll find a lot of articles on it.
 
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McScooby

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Oct 15, 2005
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The Paps of Glenn Close, Scotland.
Seemed strange to me that a couple of months ago airplay on the iPhone was pants & progressively getting worse, kinda forced me to get a couple of fire sticks, but I suppose I'll console myself that if amazon did introduce an Apple TV app it no doubt would be crippled, much in the same way the NowTV app is in the uk for Apple TV.
 

Richard8655

macrumors 65816
Mar 11, 2009
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Chicago
I think the main reason is competition between streaming devices. Amazon has their Fire and Apple their Apple TV. It's to Amazon's advantage to make Prime Video only available on their streaming device for profit purposes.
 

2010mini

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Jun 19, 2013
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Their have a few reasons -- like revenue sharing. If a tvOS app allowed users to subscribe to Prime, 30% would go to Apple -- same for any non-Prime video rentals or purchases. With iOS, you're directed to the website for video purchase transactions or new Prime subscriptions to avoid the revenue-split, but there's no Safari on an AppleTV. Apple has recently modified the revenue model by reducing the rate to 15% if the service provider hooks up with the new TV App. I doubt Amazon will find that reason to launch a tvOS app, hopefully I'm wrong.

If you do an internet search on the subject, you'll find a lot of articles on it.
This might have been true a while ago. But as of last week Apple announced they were halving their in-app fee for all video streaming services. So what's Amazon's excuse now?
 
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spacemnspiff

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Feb 11, 2009
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My position although a strong one is that I see this as a game Amazon is playing by not releasing an Apple TV app, and forcing users to choose a streaming player such as the Fire or Roku for app support. I prefer Apple TV and as a paying Prime customer, Amazon should support my device and not discriminate.

I would encourage others to contact Amazon and make their voice heard by requesting a partial refund or just plainly asking for the app support.
 

benjitek

macrumors 6502a
Sep 23, 2012
865
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This might have been true a while ago. But as of last week Apple announced they were halving their in-app fee for all video streaming services. So what's Amazon's excuse now?
The commission reduction for streaming services applies only after a customer has completed a year’s subscription. The year waiting period is waived if the provider integrates their service into the tvOS/iOS TV App. In order for Amazon to participate, they'd have to allow Prime Video subscriptions to be purchased within the app and renewed in iTunes. They prefer not to, at least not yet. I thought a tvOS app might be coming when Amazon created a separate Prime Video-only subscription for $9 per month, but maybe they didn't want to lose $2.70 or $1.35 per subscriber per month.

Amazon pays nothing to have their app on Android TV, FireTV, and Roku -- maybe they'll go for the 15% Apple Tax by incorporating their service into the tvOS/iOS TV App and iTunes, maybe they won't. Regardless, the AirPlay capabilities from the iOS Amazon Video app are great for streaming to ATV.
 
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2010mini

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Jun 19, 2013
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The commission reduction for streaming services applies only after a customer has completed a year’s subscription. The year waiting period is waived if the provider integrates their service into the tvOS/iOS TV App. In order for Amazon to participate, they'd have to allow Prime Video subscriptions to be purchased within the app and renewed in iTunes. They prefer not to, at least not yet. I thought a tvOS app might be coming when Amazon created a separate Prime Video-only subscription for $9 per month, but maybe they didn't want to lose $2.70 or $1.35 per subscriber per month.

Amazon pays nothing to have their app on Android TV, FireTV, and Roku -- maybe they'll go for the 15% Apple Tax by incorporating their service into the tvOS/iOS TV App and iTunes, maybe they won't. Regardless, the AirPlay capabilities from the iOS Amazon Video app are great for streaming to ATV.
Amazon's reasoning is pure idiocy. Absolutely nothing has prevented them from porting the same app available on iOS to tvOS. That is if paying 30% or 15% percent is too rich for their blood.
 

Nick11Mac

macrumors 6502
Jan 20, 2011
352
297
California
I've been using Roku for about 4 years and have lately considered switching to Apple TV. One reason I haven't yet is this issue with Amazon. I hope something gets worked out so we can get the app on Apple TV.
 

Scarpad

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Jan 13, 2005
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Ma
I recently bought a Firestick on the Black friday Sale for $29, and while I do like the UI for ATV a bit better, from my use the $29 firestick does everything the $150 dollar ATV does as well as the ATV, so unless your entrenched in Apple Itunes content the firestick is a pretty good deal for the money
 

benjitek

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Sep 23, 2012
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Amazon's reasoning is pure idiocy...
It hasn't caused their profits to shrink. Maybe they're waiting for the ATV marketshare to reach a higher level before committing resources to an app and giving away subscription revenue.
 

jbachandouris

macrumors 601
Aug 18, 2009
4,482
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Upstate NY
I also wish that there was an AppleTV app for Flixster or any other Ultraviolet digital copy app. They make the app for the iPhone, iPad, and Apple touch. No real reason why they can't make one for Apple TV.

Oh well, bought two 'smart' TV's and a smart bluray player.
 

Rigby

macrumors 601
Aug 5, 2008
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San Jose, CA
I asked for a partial refund of my prime membership, after much back and forth, Amazon and I settled on $35 refund for this year, and made it clear that I will expect this refund for next year as well if Amazon doesn't release an app and discriminates against my choice of streaming device.
You should also try to get a refund from Apple for all iTunes movie purchases, since they "discriminate against" all streaming devices not made by Apple. :p

Sorry, but this sounds absurd to me. Their terms of service never stated that they would support the Apple TV, and you knew that when you signed up. They probably agreed to the refund because they wanted to get rid of you. Well done though. :D
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Good for you. They really should remove Prime Video Cost from the annual subscription for those that only want Prime for Shipping due to the restrictions on how Prime Video can be used.
Agreed. They keep adding more and more stuff that I'm not interested in to justify the high price. I let my Prime subscription expire when they increased the price to $100. But honestly, I don't miss the 2-day shipping too much since there are many alternatives for online shopping that are often cheaper than Amazon anyway (including 3rd party sellers on Amazon that often have faster free shipping than Amazon even for less expensive items).
 
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Brien

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Aug 11, 2008
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Between shenanigans like this and Charter not supporting most apps (and seemingly the only provider that blocks HBO, Nick, etc.) it's frustrating.

And as more and more networks get bought by competitors/look to launch their own services, I have a feeling it is only going to get worse.
 

lsutigerfan1976

macrumors 68030
Sep 14, 2012
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I have been waiting for an app for a long time. But to be honest, I only use prime for the free shipping. I very rarely use their music app. And I have noticed that there is rarely anything I want to watch on amazon. And since I have Hulu and Netflix also, I find many of the same movies available on one of those apps also. So I don't feel like I am missing much.
 

Childs

macrumors member
May 28, 2010
48
4
Amazon doesn't sell Apple TV or Chromecast either. Its just their way of trying to get more FireTV/Stick sales. The only thing I've watched on Prime Video is Stargate SG-1, which is what I do every other year or so, but I can break out the Roku, blu-ray player, PS4, Tivo, etc, to watch it.
 

spacemnspiff

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Feb 11, 2009
810
697
MD
I don't understand Amazon's reluctance for Apple TV if Amazon already has iOS apps for Video, Amazon should be neutral, one example to follow for Amazon would be Twitter, which has an app for watching NFL games on Apple TV.
 

MysteryMii215

macrumors regular
Jan 10, 2016
135
191
NYC area
I don't understand Amazon's reluctance for Apple TV if Amazon already has iOS apps for Video, Amazon should be neutral, one example to follow for Amazon would be Twitter, which has an app for watching NFL games on Apple TV.
Well, Amazon did stop selling both the Apple TV and the Chromecast because they didn't have Amazon Video on it, but the reason why both platforms don't have Amazon Video on them is because Amazon did not make an app for those platforms. Nothing is stoping Amazon from making Amazon Video available on those platforms. They are the ones causing the problem, all so that way they can sell more Fire TVs and Fire TV Sticks.
 
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