I signed up for Amazon Prime today just for
"Grand Tour", only to find out that I don't really have a way to watch it thanks for Amazon's Apple-esque walled garden.
I can't cast it to my Vizio P50-C1, because Amazon's video app-- as I found out after I jumped through hoops to get it installed on my tablet-- apparently doesn't support Google Cast. There goes 4K and HDR.
I can't watch it on my Sony SXRD in 1080p, because the Wii U's Amazon app seems to be dead-- I just get a meaningless splash screen when I follow the link within the app to "register my device".
I can play it in a web browser on my PC. But then I'm limited to 720p and stereo sound, which kind of sucks.
This is my first exposure to Amazon outside the realm of their store front, and I can't say I'm impressed. Maybe I should see if I can get a refund on the Prime membership and just wait for someone to leak the show-- 4K and HDR included-- to BitTorrent. Tempted to do that just to spite them. Copyright is a phony moral claim anyway.
The Wii U app works-- I just didn't have the TV on, which is where they were displaying the registration info (versus the gamepad screen of course, which is what I was
looking at). So I have the show working in 1080p on the SXRD at least. Which is exactly how I watched and enjoyed all of Top Gear, incidentally-- so I'm not going backwards at least.
I could spend an additional
90 USD-- bringing the total up to 160 USD just to watch this single show-- and get Amazon's latest, 4K, HDR-compatible "TV stick". Oh, but guess what: my TV isn't
"certified" for their HDR support. Meaning, they're bending me (their customer) over, because the "content holders" have concerns over "piracy" of their precious HDR content.
Amazon is reminding me exactly
of Microsoft in the 90s and early naughts: more interested in deliberately blocking interoperability (classic Richard Stallman "anti-features"), versus putting their customers first. That approach totally backfired on Microsoft when the latest disruptor-du-jour came along in the form of Google. And undoubtedly this tact will have similar dire consequences for Amazon.
Funnily, I can
watch this show in 4K, with HDR, at the bug out house: Amazon apparently worked a one-off deal with Sony to include a custom Amazon streaming app with Sony's Android TV implementation. So my cheaper (than my Vizio) x800d will have the full monty.