Amazon would move into closer competition with Apple Inc. (AAPL), which sells its own set-top box called Apple TV. The device would also compete with products from Roku Inc. and Boxee Inc., as well as gaming consoles from Microsoft Corp. and Sony Corp. that deliver video programming.
The project is being run by Malachy Moynihan, a former vice president at Cisco Systems Inc. who worked on the networking giant’s various consumer video initiatives. In the late 1980s and 1990s, Moynihan spent nine years at Apple.
“It would certainly make some sense,” said Jason Krikorian, a general partner at venture-capital firm DCM, and the former co-founder of Sling Media, who does not have knowledge of Amazon’s plans. “They have a ton of content, an existing billing relationship with millions of users.”