Amazon Chooses MediaTek Chip for Fire TV Over Qualcomm

  • Taiwanese company is Qualcomm's main rival in mobile phones
  • Qualcomm has been seeking to expand the use of its chips

Amazon.com Inc. chose a processor from MediaTek Inc. for the newest version of its Fire TV streaming box, ditching a component from Qualcomm Inc. it used in a previous version of the product.

The upgraded Fire TV, which streams video over the Internet in higher definition, uses a quad-core processor that’s 75 percent more powerful, according to Amazon.

While Amazon doesn’t give information on the number of devices it sells, the popularity of the Web retailer’s media boxes have made it the number-one supplier of such devices in the U.S. in the two years since they were first offered, according to market researcher Strategy Analytics. Qualcomm is seeking to become less dependent on the phone market, where it’s losing market share, and pushing to get its chips into areas such as drones, cars and home electronics.

Emily Kilpatrick, a spokeswoman for Qualcomm, declined to comment

Amazon’s Fire TV Stick, a stripped-down version of the company’s larger streaming box, works on a chip made by Broadcom Corp. New versions of the devices were unveiled yesterday by the Seattle-based company.

Amazon’s offerings, which compete against Apple TV and Roku Inc.’s streaming boxes, took 30 percent of the market in the U.S. in the first quarter, according to Strategy Analytics. The devices were in use in about 36 million U.S. homes, or about a third of those with broadband Internet connections, the researcher said.

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