Is Amazon VOD Ready for a Redesign?

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Job postings on (s AMZN) suggest the online retailer may be looking to update the look and feel of its Video On Demand service. Among the positions it seeks to sill is a user experience designer, who among other things will “design the UI architecture, interface, and interaction flow of new web and on-device software applications.” With this opening, as well as multiple software development engineers, the service could get a refresh soon.

Amazon Video On Demand is one of the largest streaming on-demand services available, and is available both on PCs and through a number of TVs and Blu-ray players, as well as TiVo (s TIVO) DVRs and Roku set-top boxes. But the service is facing increasing competition from services like Vudu (now owned by Wal-mart (s WMT) and Sonic Solutions’ (s SNIC) RoxioNow-powered services, which also enable streaming video purchases and rentals.

Most notably, Netflix’s (s NFLX) subscription streaming service has found its way onto a number of consumer electronics devices, including many that also support Amazon VOD. And Netflix is now working to update the functionality of its service on some of those platforms, including recent redesigns to the user experience of its Microsoft (s MSFT) Xbox and Roku player implementations.

But Amazon isn’t just looking at possibly improving the user experience of its VOD service. Based on the job descriptions of the software development engineers it seeks, it will also focus on creating the next generation of Amazon’s content-ingestion pipeline, which will be used to ensure that the service seamlessly supports video delivery in all the file formats and encoding schemes that are necessary to support all the connected devices it serves. Those job descriptions also emphasize that the ingest and encoding platform work with Amazon’s cloud computing infrastructure as well as a distributed video storage ownership locker.

The latter digital rights locker will be implemented as Amazon seeks to make its digital offerings available for streaming through connected TVs, but also for download to be viewed on portable devices. As part of the Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem (DECE), The company is seeking to make this “Buy Once, Watch Anywhere” concept available through Amazon Video On Demand. The company already has implemented a version of the offering that allows customers to buy a DVD from its online store and be able stream certain titles instantly.

Related content on GigaOM Pro: Slow and Steady, Netflix Pulls Ahead in Streaming Video (subscription required)

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