Monday, October 24, 2011

Amazon: Aquire a Queue Anon!

I love living in the future.  Most days I have at least one type of computer on me at all times, and my phone-computer can generate a wi-fi hotspot nearly anywhere I want to go (recent trips to the north shore of Lake Superior notwithstanding).  I have podcosts-a-plently procured, and of course, access to huge stores of video entertainment.

The world is my technological oyster.  And yet...

I've been a huge Netflix fan for the last few years, since we got our Roku box and I can enjoy the great streaming selection from on my television with my remote control.  I love the Netflix Queue, the great way to mark a movie you want to watch later.  Back when I had DVD and Instant Queues, I could mark a movie not yet available for streaming in the DVD queue, and if it became available in streaming in just showed up there for me.  A happy present; a nice surprise.

Netflix since split the services and I can no longer put movies in queue that aren't currently available, so now I have to keep a separate list of movies that I want to see that *may* someday show up for streaming (p.s., thanks, IMDB, for letting me create a comprehensive watch list).  Not a good solution.  A real first world problem, for sure, but just the sort of imperfection that wrecks my dream of living twenty minutes in the future.  It is just enough of an irritant, as long as I have to make queue of movies I want to watch elsewhere, maybe I can just move the whole kit and caboodle?

Right around this time comes the announcement of the Kindle Fire, and the promise of tight integration to Amazon Video on Demand/Prime Streaming.  I have also been a huge fan of Amazon since it became my primary way to get new episodes of Dr. Who.  A fair amount of the content I've been seeking is available in Amazon as well as we Netflix, so if I could get a Wish-List like function and enter all my movies to watch once, then I could ...

Ah, rats.  Nevermind.

Amazon doesn't have any kind of queue, let alone what I need.  If the Fire and Amazon Video on Demand are going to be a success, they need - and they need fast - to:

1.  Allow me to create and manage discrete watch lists.  One for me, one for my wife, one for the both of us when we want to watch things together.  MultiQs does this for Netflix, and better than Netflix.  I can be done.
2.  Give me a Wish List for videos not yet available, so I can add them once to Amazon and they appear in my watch list when Amazon gets the license.
3.  Negotiate new content based on Wish List demand.  Not just what studios think we want, let us tell you what we really want.
4.  Let us manage the lists from the web, from the Fire, and from our TVs via Roku and other streaming boxes.

We love you Amazon.  We're rooting for you.  Let's get going on this, let's communicate that it is coming, and let's move the future twenty minutes back to the present.