Amazon has purchased online video streaming service Twitch, in a deal worth around $970 million.
Previously it was thought that Google was set to purchase the service, which was able to boast 55 million unique users in June. But a report by Forbes today has claimed that the deal fell through due to concerns that if it had gone ahead, Google would have opened itself up to possible anti-trust action as a result of owning 2 major online video services (the other, of course, being Youtube).
In a blog post, Twitch CEO Emmett Shear explained the reason behind the deal with Amazon. “We chose Amazon because they believe in our community, they share our values and long-term vision, and they want to help us get there faster.” Shear then reassured Twitch users by saying that little else would change.
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos expressed his own excitement in a press release: “Like Twitch, we obsess over customers and like to think differently, and we look forward to learning from them and helping them move even faster to build new services for the gaming community.”
Amazon has held an interest in entering the gaming market for some time now. Back in April the company hired Kim Swift, co-creator of Portal, and Clint Hocking, formerly of Ubisoft and Valve. Hocking was the brains behind Far Cry 2. The online retail giant has also been building a portfolio of in-house games. The acquisition of Twitch goes alongsideAmazon’s own streaming service Instant Video, which provides Amazon customers instant access to movies and TV shows, including Amazon’s own original series’ such as The After and Alpha House.