Amazon Instant Video comes to iPad

Posted by Mark Raby

After proving its tablet viability on the Kindle Fire, Amazon is now ready to target its streaming video service to a very different mobile audience.

The online retailer has just launched its Amazon Instant Video app for the iPad, allowing users to stream TV show episodes and movies that they purchased from Amazon.com.

Everything is cloud-based, so in typical Amazon fashion these days, no matter where you purchased your content (your home PC, your work computer, your Kindle Fire, your smartphone, etc) you'll have immediate access to it all.

And if you don't like the streaming idea because you're constantly at places without WiFi, then you're still covered. The app lets users download their videos directly to the device for offline viewing as well.

But for those who do like streaming access, and also happen to be an Amazon Prime member, the app also includes access to Amazon Prime's unlimited video viewing feature.

That feature is a direct competitor of Netflix, giving users access to thousands of hours of TV and movie content with no limit on how much they can view.

All of this comes pre-installed with the Kindle Fire, and is a huge part of Amazon's tablet strategy - it doesn't make money selling the device; instead, it banks on users buying this kind of digital content and/or signing up for Amazon Prime.

Now it can grab even more revenue from users without even needing them to buy its product. The iPad app is long overdue; we'll see if it helps Amazon in its quest to at least take a bite out of Netflix.