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Amazon Blocks Video Streaming On BlackBerry Tablet, Blames Apple

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the mr-bezos-tear-down-this-wall dept.

Blackberry 128

AZA43 writes "Amazon.com has blocked its Instant Video streaming service on BlackBerry PlayBook tablets, in an apparent effort to make its Kindle Fire device more attractive to tablet buyers. And it says Apple is the reason why it blocked the service. But the company hasn't blocked comparable Android tablets from streaming Instant Video, and Android tablets hold a much larger portion of the overall tablet market than PlayBooks. Amazon will likely succeed only in alienating customer with PlayBooks who have already purchased lots of streaming video content."

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128 comments

Summary is 100% correct (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39036225)

"Amazon will likely succeed only in alienating customer with PlayBooks who have already purchased lots of streaming video content."

Yup, that single customer is going to be really really upset about this. Good thing it doesn't affect more people.

Re:Summary is 100% correct (5, Funny)

LordNicholas (2174126) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036239)

Indeed. I hear both Playbook owners are absolutely livid about this.

Re:Summary is 100% correct (3, Insightful)

tomboalogo (2509404) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036261)

"And it says Apple is the reason why it blocked the service."

????? Is someone from Slashdot running Amazon now??

Re:Summary is 100% correct (5, Funny)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036395)

Indeed. I hear both Playbook owners are absolutely livid about this.

The guy has a multiple personality disorder? Didn't know that.

Re:Summary is 100% correct (1)

grub (11606) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037389)


I thought Mike and Jim were two different people, not personalities.

From who? (4, Funny)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036593)

I hear both Playbook owners are absolutely livid about this.

Well to be fair the second guy has not got word to us yet, still trying to find his Blackberry so he can get an email out about his fury.

Re:From who? (0)

gorzek (647352) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037267)

Even once he finds his Blackberry, there's not much chance of the email getting to anyone.

Oh!

Re:Summary is 100% correct (0)

neowolf (173735) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036769)

LOL! My thoughts exactly. I'm sure they just decided to stop supporting an essentially dead platform.

Re:Summary is 100% correct (2)

sg_oneill (159032) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037153)

Indeed. I hear both Playbook owners are absolutely livid about this.

Well in a two income family, I'm sure they can rustle up the cash for an ipad if they are so inconvenienced by it.

Re:Summary is 100% correct (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39036589)

"Amazon will likely succeed only in alienating customer with PlayBooks who have already purchased lots of streaming video content."

Yup, that single customer is going to be really really upset about this. Good thing it doesn't affect more people.

Seriously, the press release should have ended "Sorry Frank. We'll just ship you a new Kindle Fire free, for being such a good customer."...

Re:Summary is 100% correct (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39036597)

"Amazon will likely succeed only in alienating customer with PlayBooks who have already purchased lots of streaming video content."

Yup, that single customer is going to be really really upset about this.

Apparently he has a blog too.

Re:Summary is 100% correct (2)

ICLKennyG (899257) | more than 2 years ago | (#39039193)

I came here to point out the stupid end of the summary, only to find it's the primary discussion point. Good job. Carry on.

Let me know when you find someone under 40 who uses a blackberry that isn't crammed down their throat against their will.

And? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39036247)

"Amazon will likely succeed only in alienating customer with PlayBooks who have already purchased lots of streaming video content."

What is that, a dozen people?

Awful "journalism", the story is almost certainly (5, Informative)

squiggleslash (241428) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036263)

OK, this doesn't smell right. This allegation is based upon one email from customer service, and given the context it's even quite possible that "Apple" (mentioned once in the message) was a brainfart with the customer service agent intending to write "Adobe". Lest anyone think I'm grasping at straws, the entire email makes no sense whatsoever if taken literally (as it kind of implies Apple wrote Flash!), but makes perfect sense if you read "Apple" as "Adobe".

After waiting less than a day for confirmation from Amazon the author of the article decides to go ahead and make the claim despite the somewhat dubious circumstances. I don't believe it for a second, and I think the author's an idiot.

Yoda by written the subject line was (1, Informative)

x1r8a3k (1170111) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036665)

Also, from the email, it seems not to be "We won't support your Playbook because we're mean" but "We cant support it because of licensing issues."

Which makes the blog author look even more like a "I spend money at your store, how dare you not support X" over-reactionary.

Re:Yoda by written the subject line was (4, Interesting)

bigrockpeltr (1752472) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036947)

Did you people read the same article i did????
  • The author is not the one who received the customer service email.
  • The author was able to play the videos for approximately the last year or so.
  • The author is still able to play the same videos on an Android device with and OLDER version of flash player.

Hence there is no technical reason why the videos shouldnt work on the Playbook. Also you cannot assume the CSR meant Adobe instead of Apple with any certainty unless you are Mr Mantri himself. The CS email is a buch of garbage that makes no sense. But Amazon has already gone back on their promise of a kindle app so im not too surprised.

Re:Yoda by written the subject line was (3, Funny)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036983)

Since it only makes sense when you replace Apple with Adobe, then yes, you can assume they meant Adobe.

You might want to look up what "assume" means.

Re:Yoda by written the subject line was (2, Insightful)

toriver (11308) | more than 2 years ago | (#39038361)

But everyone blames Apple, it's the chic thing to do. 300 workers at an XBox assembly line threaten suicide? Blame Apple! Sony upping the price on Whitney's albums after her death, including on iTunes? Blame Apple! I am waiting for Apple to get the blame for the swine flu epidemic and Steven Tyler's horrid rendition of the U.S. national anthem next.

Re:Yoda by written the subject line was (1)

errandum (2014454) | more than 2 years ago | (#39038613)

"Apple Inc. has exclusive rights to the hardware and software that would make it possible for Amazon.com to provide Amazon Instant Videos for these devices"

It makes as much sense as Adobe having the hardware. It could have something to do with patents on DRM'ed video delivery that Apple owns or something like that.

Re:Yoda by written the subject line was (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39039175)

It makes more sense if you interpret it as a CSR mistaking the PlayBook for an iPad.

Re:Yoda by written the subject line was (3, Funny)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037177)

The CS email is a buch of garbage that makes no sense.

So... pretty much like every other customer service email from any major company that asks any sort of question more complex than "Where do I click to [insert action here]?" Just saying.

Re:Yoda by written the subject line was (5, Informative)

squiggleslash (241428) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037331)

The author is asserting that Amazon.com, on the basis of one CSR email that doesn't make sense, has deliberately decided to prevent its videos from running on the Playbook.

BTW, the situation gets even more obvious when he explains what happens. The video starts to play, and then the player crashes out with a generic error about requiring a Flash upgrade. Does that sound like how it would act if Amazon had told its developers to stop allowing Playbook users access to Amazon's Video?

It's fairly obvious what's going on here. The Blackberry version of Flash is broken. Amazon can't support that. Amazon's CSR, in a garbled way, tried to point the finger at Adobe, or Apple, or someone who he thinks is responsible for the player in the Blackberry. Rather than wait for an communication from Amazon.com, the author went off half-cocked with a far fetched conspiracy theory that in an effort to improve Kindle Fire sales, Amazon.com found the tablet platform that's got the smallest market share, and banned them from using Amazon Prime Video.

As Bugs Bunny would say, "What a maroon."

Re:Yoda by written the subject line was (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39038415)

Couldn't read the article (looks to be slashdotted) but this caught my eye:

"The video starts to play, and then the player crashes out with a generic error about requiring a Flash upgrade."

I've been getting the same error on Firefox 3.6 on Fedora 14 for about a week now. I used to watch Amazon streaming all the time but now I can't get past the update error on nearly all (certainly newer) content. A quick google search the other day revealed many other reports of the same problem on linux and MAC OS. The obvious conclusion is that Amazon is actively blocking linux and Apple as well. I guess I need to migrate to the Kindle platform as a replacement for my work laptop now.

Re:Yoda by written the subject line was (1)

squiggleslash (241428) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037479)

BTW, I typed "BS" at the end of the Subject line and missed the fact that, for whatever reason (too long? Wrong box had focus?) it didn't actually end up on the subject!

Your explanation like it better I do.

Look at the bigger picture (2)

toutankh (1544253) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036683)

I agree with you and think we should give them the benefit of the doubt. Still, the way I see it, the "blaming on Apple" part is not really the important one. What matters here is that we have hardware and software that can perform a task, and that Amazon prevents this from happening so that they can sell more of their own hardware (or so they think). Whoever they blame this on is secondary, and focusing on this secondary aspect would make you miss the important bit here: Amazon is evil for blocking its streaming service.

Re:Awful "journalism", the story is almost certain (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39036721)

Yeah, I guess Al Sacco was scared he'd be scooped on his big story. He said, "Something isn't right here, and I reached out to Amazon.com's media relations team more than 24 hours ago for clarification, but I haven't received a response." Right, Al, something isn't right, but you went and reported something wrong anyway. It's stuff like this that makes me want to side with the "Bloggers aren't Journalists" camp.

I bet tomorrow when we find out it was just a minor technical glitch and everything's fine, Al Sacco won't be issuing a retraction like a real journalist.

Re:Awful "journalism", the story is almost certain (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39037337)

Hold on, what did he report that was wrong? He reported that 1) Amazon's streaming video service is incorrectly reporting a Flash error when you attempt to play the videos on a Playbook, 2) Amazon's customer support response was 'It's Apple's fault', and 3) there's absolutely no way that it makes sense that the problem acutally *is* Apple's fault, but he hadn't gotten a clarification response from Amazon yet.

Point out how he "went and reported something wrong anyway", please.

Re:Awful "journalism", the story is almost certain (5, Insightful)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036869)

I think the user is doesn't understand the phrase "does not support" This does not mean Amazon is blocking the device. I means they don't test their service on Playbooks and don't fix bugs that occur on Playbooks. The error message is "Playback Error: Sorry we were unable to stream the video. This is likely because your Flash Player needs to be updated." That doesn't look like the message they would return if they were blocking the device.

Re:Awful "journalism", the story is almost certain (1)

oh_my_080980980 (773867) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037253)

And yet he was able to play streaming video recently and is using the latest adobe flash player.

You might want to read the article sometime so you don't sound like an ass.

Re:Awful "journalism", the story is almost certain (1)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037383)

I did read the story. If Amazon started encoding their video in some new Adobe DRM then it might not be supported by the PlayBooks Flash implimentation. If you read the comments on his site older videos still seem to work. This is Flash remember. It is known to be buggy.

Re:Awful "journalism", the story is almost certain (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39038311)

Amazon started using DRM on some videos in mid-January. It also breaks playback on certain Linux systems -- specifically those using 64-bit flash plugin, and those where (deprecated) HAL has been removed. As a Linux user and Amazon Prime subscriber, the videos I can watch are hit and miss.

Re:Awful "journalism", the story is almost certain (1)

cygnwolf (601176) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037951)

Speaking as someone who does a lot of Customer Support, there is also a difference too between 'We do not support' and 'We no longer support'. "It used to work on [insert never-supported hardware here]" is a phrase I have heard many times before. It's entirely possible that they never tested it on a Playbook during development. The fact that it worked in the past was good fortune for the playbook's owner, and due to recent changes it no longer works on a platform it was never tested to work on anyway,so they had no motivation to make sure that it still worked there.

Re:Awful "journalism", the story is almost certain (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39036871)

OK, this doesn't smell right. This allegation is based upon one email from customer service, and given the context it's even quite possible that "Apple" (mentioned once in the message) was a brainfart with the customer service agent intending to write "Adobe". Lest anyone think I'm grasping at straws, the entire email makes no sense whatsoever if taken literally (as it kind of implies Apple wrote Flash!), but makes perfect sense if you read "Apple" as "Adobe".

Sorry, but it doesn't make perfect sense to me that way either:

"Adobe Inc. has exclusive rights to the hardware and software that would make it possible for Amazon.com to provide Amazon Instant Videos for these devices."

Adobe has exclusive rights to what hardware?

Well (-1, Troll)

MoronGames (632186) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036279)

I am glad to see the use of the words "customer with PlayBooks" but I think the poster meant to say "the customer with a PlayBook"

Re:Well (2)

squiggleslash (241428) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036291)

No, RIM's customer has more than one, he's a big fan of the platform as it happens!

Re:Well (2)

RanCossack (1138431) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036417)

I have one! It is an excellently designed tablet, with a nice feel in the hand, physical buttons for media and volume, cameras, a great screen.

I sincerely wish I had paid more and bought a cheap android tablet instead.

Re:Well (0)

rikkards (98006) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037705)

I see you omitted that wonderfully (stupid) power button.
I second your wishing for a cheap android tablet. Buddy of mine thought his was stolen out of his car. I said it was more likely misplaced since who would want to steal one. He ended up getting a lenovo android and found the playbook the next day. Needless to say the playbook has been relegated to his 2 year old daughter

Occam's razor... (5, Insightful)

Kenja (541830) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036289)

Looking at the situation, I would say that the message about it being Apples fault is a canned response to people asking about playback on the iPad that got miss-routed as a response to this new issue with the PlayBook. I suspect that Amazon does not know why its not working on the PlayBook, or at least does not have a fix. I also would not be shocked if they did not fix it as the PlayBook seems like a dead platform from a development standpoint. Lets remember that a PlayBook native player would require dedicated development time since the whole Android apps on PlayBook thing never really panned out. Coupled with the out of date flash player, there's not a lot Amazon can do.

Re:Occam's razor... (2)

Babbster (107076) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036455)

You may be on to something, though it would still be sloppy customer service. The premise that they want to sell more Kindles makes no sense given the prices they set for those devices. It's the content they want to sell; that's where the profit margins are.

Re:Occam's razor... (2)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036539)

That makes a lot of sense, especially if Amazon out sources its customer service support (which many companies do). It is quite likely that the person who sent this e-mail has a script they use to find the answer to send. This response was the closest to the customer complaint they were responding to (and they failed to understand that the person was not asking about an Ipad).

Re:Occam's razor... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39038719)

Amazon is extremely aggressive in their outsourcing. Anyone who's spent any amount of time in the company will know that their CS operations are almost entirely made up of temporary contractors, under trained overseas employees who are non-native English speakers (usually with questionable fluency), and then straight up outsourced workers who make the overseas employees look like world class CSRs and English majors.

While Amazon's stated goal of being the "world's most customer-centric company" are laudable, their over-aggressiveness in discounting and cost cutting leads to situations like this where what they actually deliver is worse than what you could expect from the most busted ass Kmart store.

Re:Occam's razor... (5, Informative)

JRonin (2574371) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037173)

"Lets remember that a PlayBook native player would require dedicated development time since the whole Android apps on PlayBook thing never really panned out. Coupled with the out of date flash player, there's not a lot Amazon can do." People really should do some basic research before posting. The next major version of the PlayBook OS, 2.0, comes out next week. It includes the Android VM & the response from Android developers has reportedly been positive. The author also made it clear that he was able to stream video using older flash players on other tablets, so that excuse doesn't cut it either.

What, all 3 of them? (1)

Idaho (12907) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036293)

"Amazon will likely succeed only in alienating customer with PlayBooks who have already purchased lots of streaming video content."

Is this just an elaborate way to say "nobody will care", or is this thing more popular than I imagine? I have never even seen a PlayBook, never mind buying streaming video content for it.

Re:What, all 3 of them? (1)

wiedzmin (1269816) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036363)

I have one, it's ridiculously cheap at $150 for a 32GB tablet that can run Android apps... I will never buy anything Amazon though, after they screwed its DX customers with absolute lack of support, and it's Canadian customers with absolute lack of content, so yeah - nobody cares.

Re:What, all 3 of them? (1)

b0bby (201198) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036443)

Where did you get yours? Best I can see is over $200 for the 16GB. For that you could pick up a lightly used Touchpad, and get a bigger screen.

Re:What, all 3 of them? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39036659)

Dude, you don't want to buy a Blackberry Playbook. You really need to think about it.

Check out the apps. They are few and far between and a lot of apps that are free on Androids and iWhatevers cost money on the Playbook. I wonder how come? Heck, the Playbook doesn't even have email, contacts, or calender apps. Again, I gotta wonder about that. Some people think that Android emulation (not real Android) on the Playbook will save it. It won't. Who will develop for native Blackberry OS? Nobody.

I bought one and took it back after a few days. Nice hardware but it should have been an Android tablet. Oh well, live and learn.

Re:What, all 3 of them? (1)

b0bby (201198) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036785)

Yeah, I doubt I'd buy one, but I do have a soft spot for QNX - I kept an Ergo Audrey going for years! Of course, the Audrey had an email client....

Re:What, all 3 of them? (5, Informative)

Straif (172656) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037399)

If you install the 2.0 OS beta (or wait a couple weeks for the full release) you can have full email, contact and calendar apps which includes integration with other social networks like Twitter and Linkedin.

As for Android apps, with OS 2.0 you can sideload almost anything right now. You can also load the Marketplace directly onto a cracked playbook but that tends to have extremely unstable results. For new apps you don't even need to develop specifically for the Blackberry OS, the compiler translates most Android library calls for you so you simply compile your Android app twice and then list it directly in the BB Appworld. There's at least one Andorid market in the process of doing this right now for their entire library.

I picked up a playbook just before Christmas (it's the only BB device I own) and barely put it down the entire holiday season. It was hooked up to my parents TV for almost the entire 3 weeks I was visiting, streaming whatever I had downloaded or copied to it, and when my brother or nephews wanted to watch something I didn't I could still stream it and continue playing Angry Birds or read a ebook. I'm still using it every day. It's the perfect size to just lay down on and end table and grab to play a quick game of Monopoly or search for some useless tidbit of information.

My 66 year old mother loved hers and still comments on it whenever I'm talking to her. I just wish I didn't who her how easy the video chat was to use.

Re:What, all 3 of them? (1)

rikkards (98006) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037749)

What I am really missing on it is proper MKV support. I have the OS2 Beta on it and I have yet to figure out how to get MKVs to work in the video app. The thing that bugs me as well is it isn't going to have AC3 or DTS support so I still have to dick with the files I want to play on mine. It is handy though and I kind of like the size.

Re:What, all 3 of them? (2)

trampel (464001) | more than 2 years ago | (#39038121)

Minor correction: you don't really compile the app twice, rather RIM provides a postprocessor to convert APKs into their own format.

Using their web-based converter it literally took 10min to get one of my apps to run on a friends Playbook.

Re:What, all 3 of them? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39036761)

The 64gb is 200 bucks here at The Source, canadian radio shack. I picked one up.

I love it's web browser, it takes a giant shit over the worthless browser that shipped with my Iconia tablet. It's easily on par with the browser on the iPad. The 7" form factor is perfect for a device that will live most of its life in my glovebox. It plays video and music well, has HDMI with smooth 1080p. I like how the bezel outside of the screen is touch sensitive, so you can do stuff like scrolling and navigation, without getting fingerprints all over the screen. There's a decent selection of commercial games for it, Spiderman and NFS are fun.

Bluetooth support is great, much better than the buggy android that I have to unpair/repair the keyboard every half hour. If you have a BB phone you're all set to tether via BT. Overall, the quality of the device is better than any Android and it's a much more open device than my iPad or iPod.

Actually, the android browser runs faster and smoother on the playbook than it does on the Iconia. And I wouldn't be surprised if hackers bring Ice Cream Sandwich to the Playbook long before Acer delivers.

If you like what it does about the box, and can live without 10,000 free fart apps, and boxed in "app stores", it's worth owning. Especially if you mostly want a tablet as a portable web browser.

If you just want to show you're rich enough to own an iPad, by all means, get an iPad. Just know that iPad 3 is coming out in the fall, so you only have about 6 months to lord it over everyone, before you look like a broke hillbilly again.

Re:What, all 3 of them? (4, Interesting)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036961)

I've seen quite a few playbooks, but then, I live in Ottawa. And go past 2 RIM offices on the bus ride from work. I'm pretty sure however, that I haven't seen anybody who doesn't work for RIM with a playbook.

Re:What, all 3 of them? (1)

rikkards (98006) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037785)

That would be me. I had no real interest in getting a tablet but when they heavily discounted it, I figured it would be worth getting. It was at the price I paid but at $500 it is a heaping pile and at any other price I would recommend an Android over the playbook.

You don't buy online streaming content (4, Informative)

Ralph Spoilsport (673134) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036359)

You buy ACCESS to data, and the moment the supplier doesn't like you, some obscure line in the EULA is found and used to deny the User ACCESS to the Data. But the user never actually owns the Data, in that the data is resident on machines of their possession.

Re:You don't buy online streaming content (1)

alen (225700) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036475)

who cares

for the $80 a year membership to amazon prime and the cheap prices on some of the TV content it's well worth it

Re:You don't buy online streaming content (2)

geminidomino (614729) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036561)

Strange, I never seem to have that problem with Demonoid...

my non-relevant platform is better than yours... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39036473)

Slashdot, you should be ashamed. We have here a 1% of computer users bashing a 1% of tablet users. Slashdot has always been full of intellectual masturbation and priggish behaviour but seriously almost all the comments here are worthless.

So its Adobe not Apple? (3, Insightful)

perpenso (1613749) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036505)

... Amazon blamed the PlayBook's Flash player for the issue, saying the Flash software needed to be update, even though my Adobe Flash software is up to date (v11.1.122.4) ...

So its Adobe not Apple?

FWIW being current and needing an update is plausible. Amazon may have learned of an exploit in Flash and will only resume streaming after the security problem is fixed. OK, plausible but not terribly likely.

... Apple owns the rights to the hardware and software that would allow Amazon video content to be played on the BlackBerry PlayBook? Yet Amazon has allowed Instant Video customers to play video content on RIM's tablet for the past year, and just now the company decided to block the functionality? Something isn't right here, and I reached out to Amazon.com's media relations team more than 24 hours ago for clarification, but I haven't received a response. The above response from Amazon customer service could simply be misinformation sent by an irresponsible customer representative ...

Then maybe a better title for your article would have been "Amazon Blocks Instant Video on BlackBerry PlayBook, Customer Service Rep Blames Apple"

Look at the release versions (1)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037527)

I would say his flash software is not up to date. He is stating the PlayBook is using: v11.1.122.4 FireFox is using 11.1.102.56 Android is using 11.1.112.61 Clearly each device gets its own build. I bet 122 is the Playbook device number. If so then there have only been 4 versions of Flash released to the PlayBook compared to 61 versions on Android.

Is this even legal? (0)

StoutFiles (2471680) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036633)

I don't think you're allowed to pick and choose which companies can use your content per fair market rules.

Re:Is this even legal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39036897)

That's ridiculous. Nobody is required to develop a working service for every possible outlet.

Re:Is this even legal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39036965)

Hi Netflix, this is Linux calling...

Re:Is this even legal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39037113)

Seeing as Amazon streaming doesn't work on most devices, Apple iDevices, PS3, Xbox360, Wii, Android devices, Netgear media hubs, Boxee box et al. Why would they bother with a dead device like the awful Playbook? (yes, I've had one for a while from the firesale #2).

Re:Is this even legal? (1)

whoop (194) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037591)

Also, see the GoogleTV vs many of the content providers web sites when GTV first came out. They were rushing to get all sorts of fixes to viewing their content on things there were not a traditional computer.

Blocked PlayBooks? (0)

chinton (151403) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036661)

I'll bet all 5 Playbook owners are pissed.

Re:Blocked PlayBooks? (0)

bigrockpeltr (1752472) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037059)

you must be one of those midless apple drones... all the same.. all making the same joke in the same thread like all the other mindless drones before you.

note: this is not personal. it just seems everyone is jealous of the playbook and trying to keep it down. of course RIM's pathetic marketing doesnt help either.

It only starts here... (1)

spacepimp (664856) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036699)

To be honest, the PlayBook is a non entity, I am very surprised they would block this device. It does raise a lot of concerns about the future plans they have with Android/iPad/Win8. If they pull back from any of these OS's or devices it will severely alter the relevance of their streaming media/Prime offerings. They are walking tightrope here. All that being said; why start with the PlayBook? Who is buying one of those over a Kindle Fire?

I sense a great disturbance in the Force... (5, Funny)

evel aka matt (123728) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036757)

...as if 4 voices suddenly cried out in terror and then went on with their lives.

Re:I sense a great disturbance in the Force... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39038365)

and your girlfriend being one of them and went on with her life

Dear RIM (1)

jamessnell (857336) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036811)

Dear RIM, I appreciate you. I'm sorry that so many others feel threatened to the point of acting like jerk-bags to you. 2011 was a lame year, but you're still here and your new Playbook OS will make ripples. Keep promoting and enabling quality content creation and you'll do well. Afterall, people care more about their own lives than anything else, so keep on with helping them express themselves through your products. I like Amazon just fine, but blocking you like this, that's just a tempertantrum that provides you with otherwise hidden opportinuties. Keep up the quality work. Thank you RIM.

To all the haters... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39036817)

The idea of it being a lower selling platform or not does not determine if it is a just thing to block someone from using a service that we've (the playbook owners) supported in the past. I used this all the time because of netflix being a lame duck and it worked fantastically... So you all who seem to need to talk shit on this amazing piece of hardware, are going to tell me that the MANY playbook users out there, our money is not good? Oh that's right our money doesn't spend cause we bought hardware that meets/exceeds our needs... Further more amazon has a piece of hardware that shares many of the same attributes as the Playbook, and sells for about the same cost (yes even though the playbook was a "fire" sale), so penalize us for trying to get the most bang for our buck... Thanks everyone on this site and the many others who feel the need to shit on something that they don't prefer. Next start on others ideas on music, religion, politics.... you all will go really far.

Does Not Support != blocked (1)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036979)

Does Not Support means they don't fix bugs for a given device. If they have an App on the PlayBook app store then they should still be supporting the device. If they don't then its fine that they are not. Its up to RIM to fix bugs in its Flash Player and web browser.

I would get a Playbook at $149 (even for refurb) (1)

BLToday (1777712) | more than 2 years ago | (#39036949)

I had the Nook Color (running CM7) and overclocked (1.2 Ghz) but it still felt laggy. I gave that away over Christmas so I need a new cheapie tablet that doesn't lag. The Playbook felt fine when I was testing it, but without a lot of apps it would just be used as a web tablet.

Re:I would get a Playbook at $149 (even for refurb (1)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037585)

Look at the Vizio 8 tablet, it's a little behind in OS being a gingerbread tablet, but it includes a fancy universal remote app and IR port, and it has 3 speakers to do stereo sound in either orientation. I do not own one, I have a ASUS Transformer, but they are not budget machines at all.

Oh, come on, now. Really? (1)

el cisne (135112) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037061)

"Amazon will likely succeed only in alienating customer with PlayBooks who have already purchased lots of streaming video content."

Isn't that a bit dramatic?? I mean look at this, "RIM sold into the channels approximately 150,000 BlackBerry PlayBook tablets in the third quarter..." [rim.com].

Ok, that is Q3, and you can go back to April 2011, but still, just how many are there really who a) bought a PlayBook, and b) "have already purchased lots of streaming video content" ??

I venture to think Amazon maybe "doesn't give a shit" [youtube.com].

Be sure to tip your Slashdot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39037503)

I am impressed to see that CIO Magazine understands the value of self-promoting their articles here. I don't know whether they compensate /. for the attention or eyes, but hopefully they do this out of appreciation for the value this community brings rather than from a desperation to inflate their viewership numbers through whatever means possible.

Amazon bans Slashdot from playing videos too! (1)

whoop (194) | more than 2 years ago | (#39037673)

OMG, I went to Slashdot.org to watch some videos and they are not loading! Amazon is really pissing me off.

I guess I'll go to Nintendo.com next so I can try to check my email. If that doesn't work, boy am I ever going to post about this on the Internets.

unable to verify (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39037787)

nobody has been able to find someone who owns a PlayBook.

Speaking as a Playbook owner... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39037807)

I have a Playbook. I like it. I think a few features need to be added to make it complete (Netflix and an Email client; also an SD slot). All in all, it's pretty good. At the $150-$200 range it isn't too shabby. It's a great device, without a good marketing plan.

However, I've seen this before when Hulu stopped working on it. One day I could watch Hulu. The next day I couldn't. And the "blame Apple" excuse is valid. Apple pushes really hard for arbitrary limitations based on the device the end user is using. SO a tablet is a different device than a computer.

Stupid (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39037809)

I hate to be so crass in a subject, but that is just stupid. Not Amazon - the article. The author. WTH is wrong with people?

Even more astonishing, Amazon also blamed Apple. <iGasp!>

The following text comes from an Amazon customer service e-mail I received from another perturbed PlayBook owner:

        "At this time, 'PlayBook' is not a supported device for Amazon Instant Video content. I'm sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.

        Apple Inc. has exclusive rights to the hardware and software that would make it possible for Amazon.com to provide Amazon Instant Videos for these devices. Because of these restrictions, we are unable to offer compatible video content at this time.

        Thanks for your interest in Amazon Instant Video. We look forward to seeing you again soon.

        Best regards,

        Mantri R

        Amazon.com"

Huh? Apple owns the rights to the hardware and software that would allow Amazon video content to be played on the BlackBerry PlayBook? Yet Amazon has allowed Instant Video customers to play video content on RIM's tablet for the past year, and just now the company decided to block the functionality?

There is so much wrong with the above that I could, and may, barf. 'PlayBook' is seen in quotes, denoting (to me) that Amazon has it's very specific list of support devices and your 'ThingyMaJig' is not on that list. Ok, moving on...

The use of Apple, as noted by another poster above, was probably wrong on the service rep's part - Adobe is more likely what they meant but instead pulled the standard response for Apple customers who don't have Flash installed (or aren't up to date, as is the case here possibly). The author goes on in to the whole versions business, comparing his Android tablet of his and it's more-outdated version of Flash and saying that it's totally an anti-RIM/anit-PlayBook injustice!

Of course, it could also be:
  - the browser
  - the cache
  - some weird headers
  - his Flash install
  - Bill Gates having a field day with his monies
  - Apple, because, you know, Apple and PlayBooks and RIM Jobs and errr....

The fact that this got picked up on /. is not surprising, sadly, as nothing of unimportance seems to be left out these days. "Disgruntled PlayBook owner DENIED ACCESS TO AMAZON STREAMING - Amazon blames Apple!" <-- someone thought that, and then thought it was legitimate news. I'm going back to ONTD.

Good! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39037811)

It means Apple "care", as in they see the Playbook as a greater threat to their gadgets than Android devices. "Start worrying, details to follow," as some like to put it. RIM is the only company that really compares to Apple in terms of hardware quality and market.

Right out of the Slashdot playbook (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39037815)

Blame Apple for everything.

Really?... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39037931)

Okay for all those bagging on the playbook, you're partially correct, the device isn't making waves in tech circles. But that isn't to say that its a device. I own one along with several other tablets (android, apple, and a couple of off brand). It's actually one of the better performers if you actually like tables and want them to do more than one thing at a time. But with that being said it's sad that you guys would jump on this without even a basic attempt to check the claim. I jumped on the device and loaded up a free show (Sesame street, "Get Healthy now") and the service is still working fine. My guess is the author may have an "unsupported" plug in, or he may already be on OS2 (which is still technically in beta). Either way you look at this, this is a poor reflection of the types of stories that are being posted, and a it's poor representation of the types of posts the stories should be receiving. I give both a "Come On MAN!"

CSR meant RIM (1)

cforciea (1926392) | more than 2 years ago | (#39038381)

Clearly a canned response that the CSR forgot to switch out Apple for RIM in it. Nothing to see here.

Pirates win agiain. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39038663)

Welcome Blackberry users, now you how Linux users feel when it comes to DVD and Netflix playback. But of course pirates support Linux, do want you want because a pirate is Free, You are a pirate. And we "pirated" that phrase too. Jailbreak your Blackberry and join the fun.

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