Amazon wants it Remove Android operating system From Firesticks and Fire TV devices.
Amazon is forging a new path in connected devices by developing an alternative operating system, codenamed Vega, to replace Android on Fire TVs, smart displays and other devices.
This strategic move, evident from discussions with insiders, job listings and other materials, represents a major shift in Amazon’s approach to hardware software.
Vega’s development appears to be at an advanced stage, with tests already being conducted on Fire TV streaming adapters.
Amazon has begun informing select partners about moving to a new application framework soon.
Insiders suggest that Vega could debut on select Fire TV devices as early as next year, highlighting the rapid progress of this initiative.
Long term vision
Amazon’s journey toward an autonomous operating system began years ago, with initial explorations dating back to 2019 and discussions with chipmakers dating back to as early as 2017.
These efforts have been gaining momentum recently, as noted by an Amazon employee on tech worker forum Blind, who revealed that most of the operating system’s development has been completed, with the current focus on the SDK and enticing developers.
Braniecki’s announcement on LinkedIn in early 2023 about working on a next-generation operating system for various Amazon product lines underscores the breadth of this project.
Vega’s distinctive approach
Vega is seen as a web-based operating system designed specifically for smart home devices and beyond.
Currently, Amazon devices run on Fire OS, a forked version of Android, allowing apps to be easily ported from Android devices to the Amazon ecosystem.
However, using Android has its drawbacks, such as lagging behind Google’s development and carrying unnecessary code for modern smart home devices.
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This approach makes it easier to develop apps across a wide range of devices, including iOS and Android devices, as well as smart TVs.
Transformation and strategic advantages
Amazon plans to eventually move all of its new devices to Vega, which includes not only Fire TVs and smart displays but also in-car entertainment systems and future hardware products.
The move is consistent with Amazon’s automotive ambitions, as evidenced by its job listings and its introduction of Fire TV for select in-car systems in 2021.
By adopting Vega, Amazon can avoid disputes with Google over the use of Android and gain more control over its ecosystem.
Beyond competitive pressures
Industry insiders point out that Amazon’s shift to Vega is driven not only by competitive pressures with Google, but also by a broader vision.
Amazon aims to capture the attention of millions with a range of affordable devices, and monetize this audience through advertising and services.
A custom-built operating system like Vega can be the most effective strategy to achieve this goal.
In short, Amazon’s development of Vega OS represents a bold step towards independence from Android, with the aim of strengthening its control over its device ecosystem and aligning with its long-term strategy of reaching a wide audience across different platforms.
The move could reshape the landscape of smart device operating systems, making Amazon a more self-reliant and more influential player in the world of technology.
For more information on this story, see the report from Low pass.
Amazon’s potential switch from Fire OS to the new Vega OS could greatly impact the popular Amazon Firestick, one of the leading streaming devices on the market.
Amazon has already shown tendencies toward restricting these devices, such as blocking third-party launchers and customizing shortcut buttons on the Firestick remote.
While the introduction of Vega may not immediately overhaul the Fire TV ecosystem, it represents Amazon’s continued effort to innovate and assert greater control over its devices’ software, which could shape the future of its product lines and consumer interactions.