Amazon is rumored to be working on a new streaming music subscription service, separate from Prime Music, to compete with the likes of Spotify, Apple Music, and Google Play Music. After noticing an unusual lack of “Prime” branding in the new Amazon Music app for the Fire TV, I began to suspect the app was released this week in preperation for the rumored new music service from Amazon. I did some digging through the app’s code, as I am often inclined to do, and have found clear evidence that Amazon will indeed be launching a new premium streaming music service called Amazon Music Unlimited.
The banner ad and icon image displayed above were found within the new Fire TV music app. The slogan “listen to any song” seems to imply the vast majority, if not all, of Amazon’s music store will be accessible to subscribers of Amazon Music Unlimited. The same slogan is used within the new Fire TV music app to upsell Prime members on the new music service.
It appears the new music service is codenamed “Hawkfire” internally at Amazon, or at least that’s the codename being used to reference the service within the new Fire TV music app. Region translations for the US, UK, Germany, and Japan, which are the four areas where the Fire TV has been released, are present within the app as well. This seems to suggest Amazon Music Unlimited will launch globally once it becomes available.
I could not find any reference to pricing or a launch date, probably because that information is usually retrieved dynamically and rarely hardcoded within apps. Industry sources have said the service will cost $9.99 per month, and there will be a $3.99 or $4.99 per month option available exclusively to Amazon Echo owners.
A new Fire TV interface is expected to be released soon that matches the asthetics of the new Amazon Music app. Yet, Amazon felt the need to release the new music app now, using a less than ideal interim way of launching the app, before the new Fire TV interface is released. That tells me Amazon Music Unlimited will be announced very soon, before the new Fire TV interface arrives, which would explain the new music app’s early arrival.