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Amazon absorbs the Twitch phenomenon

Amazon purchases for $970 million
Amazon purchases for $970 million

It seems like every time a tech product gets large, a big boy comes in and takes over. Much like Oculus Rift being picked up by Facebook, these moves are equivalent to the New York Yankees scooping up the best player from the Houston Astros. There will always be people who think moves like this are "selling out" the company, but sometimes it pays in big dividends for the industry. On Monday, Amazon officially announced the purchase of the streaming service Twitch. Twitch is booming more than ever thanks to the next generation consoles and its direct implementation to the systems. Gone are the days of using a piece of equipment to save your video game recording, then uploading it to YouTube. Twitch is clearly the future of this technology, and Amazon wants to do its part to help along the way.

Emmett Shear, CEO of Twitch, released a thank you letter coinciding with the purchase. Below is what he had to say, and the link to the letter is here.

"Dear Twitch Community,

It’s almost unbelievable that slightly more than 3 years ago, Twitch didn’t exist. The moment we launched, we knew we had stumbled across something special. But what followed surprised us as much as anyone else, and the impact it’s had on both the community and us has been truly profound.

Your talent, your passion, your dedication to gaming, your memes, your brilliance - these have made Twitch what it is today. Every day, we strive to live up to the standard set by you, the community. We want to create the very best place to share your gaming and life online, and that mission continues to guide us.

Together with you, we’ve found new ways of connecting developers and publishers with their fans. We’ve created a whole new kind of career that lets people make a living sharing their love of games. We’ve brought billions of hours of entertainment, laughter, joy and the occasional ragequit. I think we can all call that a pretty good start.

Today, I’m pleased to announce we’ve been acquired by 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. We’re keeping most everything the same: our office, our employees, our brand, and most importantly our independence. But with Amazon’s support we’ll have the resources to bring you an even better Twitch.

I personally want to thank you, each and every member of the Twitch community, for what you’ve created. Thank you for putting your faith in us. Thank you for sticking with us through growing pains and stumbles. Thank you for bringing your very best to us and sharing it with the world. Thank you, from a group of gamers who never dreamed they’d get to help shape the face of the industry that we love so much.

It’s dangerous to go alone. On behalf of myself and everyone else at Twitch, thank you for coming with us.

Emmett Shear, CEO"

Per the press release, Twitch launched in June 2011 to focus exclusively on live video for gamers. Under the terms of the agreement, which has been approved by Twitch’s shareholders, Amazon will acquire all of the outstanding shares of Twitch for approximately $970 million in cash, as adjusted for the assumption of options and other items. Subject to customary closing conditions, the acquisition is expected to close in the second half of 2014.

Amazon has been doing a lot of integration lately with its Prime. Video Game consoles allow rentals and streaming from Amazon apps. Will anything actually change with this purchase, or will Amazon have some new ideas of spreading the ideas behind Twitch? It should certainly be an option, in the future, to see Twitch streaming live from its Apps on other outlets. Stay tuned for more information involving Twitch.

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