Amazon is finally giving Android users a way to watch movies and TV shows from Prime Instant Video on their phone. That should be pretty good news for Amazon Prime subscribers, as they've long been able to stream onto most other major platforms — the iPhone included — while Android has remained left out.
Please pay close attention, you will be quizzed later
Exactly how Amazon makes you go about watching videos on Android is pretty convoluted though, so bear with us: First, you have to download a newly updated version of Amazon's standard Android app. Once you're in the app, you'll now be able to start browsing Prime's videos. You won't be able to start watching a movie just yet, however. Instead, Amazon will prompt you to download a Prime Instant Video app. But because Amazon, for some reason, doesn't want to publish this app into the Google Play Store, you'll have to set up your phone to allow apps to be installed from unknown sources in order to download it. Once you've set that up, you can finally install this new Prime Instant Video app and start watching your movie. (You can also download the app from the Amazon Appstore app, if you already have that installed.)
It's hard to imagine that Amazon doesn't realize how utterly roundabout and confusing this process is. It's asking a whole lot from the average phone user too, who maybe shouldn't even be messing with these settings. That all said, Amazon may be eager to have Android users set their phones up to allow apps to be installed from outside of Google Play. If Amazon can hook people in who just want to watch movies, it'll then be a lot easier to get them to start installing apps off of the Amazon Appstore too. Giving people a reason to do that is arguably just as big of a hurdle, but it could at least explain away some of Amazon's absurd process here.