The first signs of Amazon abandoning Android in favor of its in-house operating system have begun to surface, with the 3rd generation Echo Show 5 having been spotted running the Amazon-developed Linux variant known as Vega OS. The latest version of the Echo Show 5 was released in May 2023 and introduced improvements to the smart display’s speakers, microphones, and screen.

Zatz Not Funny has reported the findings as shown in the image above, that were first discovered by Janko Roettgers last week. The clearest indication of the change is that the version number of the OS has rolled back to 1.1. Additionally, it’s been spotted that Netflix is reporting that its app is not compatible with the 3rd generation Echo Show 5.

Moving away from Android can be beneficial for Amazon for many reasons, primarily the fact that the current version of Amazon’s operating system, known as Fire OS is based on Android 9, which was originally released back in 2018 and is a far cry from this year’s current release, Android 14.

Other Amazon devices that are currently sold still run the existing Fire OS. However it’s reported that some Fire TV devices will ship with Vega OS sometime in 2024. Amazon is hoping that app developers who have already got an established presence on the Fire platforms will develop for Vega as well, by encouraging developers to utilise React Native as an application framework.

Amazon has been toying with the idea of its own OS for a long time, with Janko reporting that it has been in discussion with chip makers since 2017, which sits at the same time as the release of the original Echo Show. Considering this, it could be argued that Amazon has always seen the Android-based Fire OS as a ‘stop-gap’ until it is able to build its own OS.

Source: Zatz Not Funny


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