Amazon is reportedly working on its own Linux-based OS to replace Android on its Fire TVs, smart displays, and other non-tablet devices.
—What’s that? This isn’t Ubuntu related? Oh I know that — but I’m excited!
Word of Amazon’s new OS, which is being developed under the codename ‘Vega’ (causing me to remember the worst Android tablet I ever owned) comes by way of Lowpass‘ journalist Janko Roettgers.
He says he’s spoken to sources who’ve confirmed Amazon is building its own iOS/Android competitor, and has tasked ‘hundreds of people’ in its Amazon Device OS group with building it.
This includes former Mozilla engineer Zibi Braniecki, who tweeted earlier this year to say he’s working at Amazon on a ‘next generation Operating System for Smart Home, Automotive, and other Amazon Devices product lines’ (sic).
Roettgers adds that his sources say “most of the OS development is already done”, and that Vega could start shipping on Fire TVs early next year. Plus, an SDK release is being prepared for release soon, to enable developers to port their wares to it.
React Native is a very canny choice as it’s cross-platform, making it easier for devs already using it to build their iOS/Android apps to bring them to Vega.
Now, I shouldn’t get carried away. For one, it doesn’t (currently) seem like Amazon’s “Vega” OS will be used on anything really exciting like a consumer tablet (understandable since Android apps are dominant). Secondly, we’re talking about Amazon – ’nuff said.
But Vega is seemingly going be used on Fire TV, Echo devices, IoT, and appear in Amazon’s automative ambitions when they materialise.
Amazon’s eventual goal, according to Roettgers’ sources, is to move away from relying on Android entirely, for all of its new hardware devices.
Who knows what that could include down the line…