Several weeks ago, this mysterious “digital media receiver” was brought to my attention. I’ve been largely quiet on the matter as I was hopeful that I might turn up more of a smoking gun… as I ultimately did with the Amazon gaming controller. Yet, other than confirmation Best Buy will be carrying an Amazon “streaming player”, I’ve hit something of a dead end. And, with an announcement just days away, I figured I’d share this series of FCC filings to stoke the imagination (and to unleash the sleuths amongst us).
Amazon is known to pass gadgetry thru the FCC under cover of a shell company. In this case, we’re looking at Ailen LLC. While I can’t directly link them to Amazon, the filing pattern resembles prior Amazon endeavors … with someone going to a good deal of effort to disguise the box (CL1130) and remote (DU3560) … that hit in close proximity to the gaming controller (filed by Vafara LLC). Further, the box was evaluated by the engineering test firm last summer … but just passed thru the FCC… perhaps supporting the blown Christmas launch rumor.
Having said all that, TechCrunch is quite convinced the Amazon streamer will resemble the Chromecast or Roku Streaming Stick – a possibility we suggested back in December. Yet, based merely on the line drawing above, this device seems to feature a relatively square form. Assuming this is indeed an Amazon product, has the enclosure changed or is the picture not representative? I can also imagine a scenario where Amazon releases both a box and a stick, à la Roku, and this is just one of multiple boxes. Related, will the gaming controller be part of the “update on our video business” unveiling next week, or is this to be a follow-on announcement?
These Ailen filings don’t offer much in the way of technical details — all we really know is that the box features both dual band WiFi and Bluetooth, while the remote communicates via Bluetooth. Wether or not this is actually Amazon hardware, one would assume Amazon will also release a mobile app for remote control. Related, given Kindle Fire HDX capabilities, I imagine any Amazon streamer would support Miracast screen mirroring – to quickly close the gap on Roku’s 1200 channels (despite Netflix and Hulu apps being a lock).
One final mystery in closing… a battery-powered 802.11 b/g/n “wireless scanner” also passed thru the FCC (under yet another company name). No idea what that is or if it’s connected — as it’s entirely possible I’m creating patterns at this point where there are none. One way or another, we’ll know more (if not all) come April 2nd!