Amazon takes on Apple, Google with new home devices

Amazon takes on Apple, Google with new home devices Tech giant Amazon has made it clear that it wants to own the largest share of the consumer technology pie. In a recent event, Amazon unveiled a range of new home devices designed to take on rivals Google and Apple. The story is our main highlight in this week’s subscription roundup. In addition, we feature The Washington Post’s journey to 1 million subscriptions and also cover Netflix’s new plans for in-flight streaming.

Amazon launches new Echo devices, upgraded Fire TV

In a move that will put Amazon right on top of the smart home market, the tech giant has unveiled a broad selection of new devices at a press event in Seattle earlier this week. Its range of Echo devices include the $99 Echo, $149 Echo Plus, the inexpensive $20 a pair Echo Buttons, along with a couple of other home devices. Through these range of smart assistants, Amazon is clearly taking on Apple’s HomePod and Google Home line of devices. In addition, Amazon has also launched an upgraded Fire TV box with Alexa support. This device is Amazon’s answer to the new Apple TV 4K and Google’s Chromecast Ultra. While hardware products aren’t that central to Amazon’s business, they are important access points that expand the reach of Alexa and their subscription service Amazon Prime

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Washington Post crosses 1 million digital subscribers

It seems that the shift to a subscription-based model is paying off for The Washington Post. The newspaper which has been focused on gaining as many paying subscribers as possible has just seen digital subscriptions cross the 1 million mark. The latest numbers put it just behind its arch rival, The Wall Street Journal which boasts of 1.27 million digital subscribers. However, The New York Times is clearly leading the race with 2.3 million paid digital subscribers.

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Netflix wants to conquer the skies

Subscription giant Netflix recently announced that it is working on a bandwidth-efficient technology that will bring Wi-Fi costs for airlines down by 75%. The airlines could then pass on this benefit to their customers by offering free or low-cost Wi-Fi, which can be used by travellers to access Netflix on their personal devices. Netflix already offers its streaming service on Virgin America, Aeromexico, Qantas, and Virgin Australia. This move is a great way for Netflix to access the untapped potential that lies in the skies and become the streaming service of choice anywhere, anytime.

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Also, read about Volvo’s new car subscription service