Amazon has expanded its X-Ray for movies feature, which enables Kindle users to tap on an actor or actress and discover which films they’ve starred in, by adding support for TV shows today.
The service, which uses the popular IMDB database, now supports some of the most popular shows available on Amazon Instant Video; Justified, Downton Abbey, The West Wing, Sons of Anarchy, Falling Skies, American Horror Story, Grey’s Anatomy, Doctor Who, The Walking Dead, Lost, Glee, Breaking Bad and Game of Thrones.
The feature is exclusive to the Kindle Fire, Kindle Fire HD and Amazon Instant Video app for Wii U. It follows an iOS version of X-Ray for Books, a similar feature focused on novels and textbooks, that was launched in December last year.
Starting today, viewers can tap the screen of their tablet (or tablet controller, in the case of Nintendo’s new video game console) to see every film and TV show that a particular actor has starred in.
To set it up, users simply tap the “Includes X-Ray” icon before launching the video. At any point in the TV show, tapping the screen will bring up a secondary window displaying all of the cast members present in the current scene. Tapping an actor’s name will bring up a full biography, as well as the other films they’ve been involved with. Finally, hitting the play button in the bottom left-hand corner will resume playback.
“X-Ray has been one of the most loved features on Kindle Fire HD since it launched last September,” said Peter Larsen, Vice President, Amazon Kindle. “For people who are passionate about movies and TV, there is no better way to watch than on Kindle Fire HD, which combines an exceptional viewing experience with the unbelievable power of the over 100 million pieces of data in IMDb’s catalog.”
There’s no word yet on whether this feature will be rolled out to iOS and Android devices. By keeping some of the best X-Ray features restricted to its own range of tablets, Amazon is no doubt increasing the perceived value of its hardware. Given that both the Kindle Fire and Kindle Fire HD are heavily subsidized, it should also encourage device owners to subscribe to Amazon’s on-demand video streaming service.
Even so, the immediate support for Wii U suggests that Amazon is keen to promote its IMDB integration on multiple platforms. Given its intense competition with Netflix at the moment, it would be wise for the company to push its exclusive features to as many users as possible.
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