Amazon, you've got competition

tl;dr I’m using a Chromecast and the Google Play store to purchase and rent movies instead of Amazon Prime Instant Video. This is a change from what I’ve been doing and unless Amazon makes it easier, faster or cheaper, they’ll probably continue to loose business from me.

A few months ago I picked up a Nexus 10. I love it, it is great. A few weeks ago I made my first non-app purchase in the play store, some movies to watch on a flight to SFO. Watching movies on the tablet was a great experience. The purchase was quick, downloading them to the device was fairly simply and the battery life on the device let me watch several movies with plenty of juice left over.

I’ve also been an Amazon Prime member for a while and the whole family has been using Amazon’s streaming video service through our PS3 for a few years now. In fact, between Amazon Prime and Netflix, we didn’t have cable for several years. The selection of movies and TV shows on Amazon is great and the purchase/rent flow is really easy to use.

With the release of the Chromecast, Amazon has been put on notice. During the Super Bowl, I let Vanessa pick out a movie from the Google Play store on my tablet and with the Chromecast, she watched it on a TV that doesn’t have any capability to stream Amazon/Netflix. Using the Chromecast to watch a video purchased and streamed from my Nexus 10 was super easy and my 7 year old figured out pretty quickly.

What the Chromecast does for me is make streaming something that I can do mobily within my house. I don’t have to have the PS3 setup, I don’t have to run any special streaming software or have video files on my Linux box, I don’t have to deal with clunky Time Warner Cable software and most of all I don’t have to have a device that is fixed to each and every TV. I have one Chromecast and it is small and light enough to move from TV to TV without being a big problem. I’d also rather own 2-3 of them than spending several hundred dollars to have a roku/PS3 on each TV.

Amazon is great and I love the selection of movies they have, but with my Nexus 10, our multiple computers, the Google Play store and my Chromecast, I’ll probably continue purchasing movies elsewhere. I like the portability and versatility.