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Is Amazon Looking to Rumble With Netflix?

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Because we do not know what this service might look like, here is a picture of the Amazon river.

TV and film streaming on a subscription basis has been Netflix’s turf for a while now (s NFLX) (sorry, Blockbuster). But Amazon (s AMZN) may be looking to change that, according to sources speaking anonymously to the Wall Street Journal.

The Journal reports that Amazon has been proposing a web-based subscription service for TV shows and movies to a bunch of media companies, including NBC (s GE), Time Warner (s TWX) and Viacom (s VIA). The service would be viewable on the web as well as through devices like the Xbox (s MSFT), Roku and Internet-ready TVs.

At least one version of the proposal suggested that the offering might be bundled with the Amazon Prime service. That subscriber base would consist of people who give Amazon $79 a year for free two-day delivery on physical media — i.e., not exactly the audience you’d imagine as early adopters of a streaming video service — but it would help them launch with a bang.

This would be on top of Amazon’s current VOD service, which we thought might have been planning a redesign due to some recent job postings for designers. But a new streaming service would also potentially explain this.

One ironic twist in this potential faceoff between Amazon and Netflix is that Netflix relies on Amazon’s cloud services to power its website and recommendations engine. Anyone want to place their bets now?

Photo courtesy of Flickr user markg6.

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