Amazon Prime Video will soon support Dolby Atmos and provide viewers with a richer listening experience. Although Amazon has yet to officially confirm the new audio support, the Dolby website does now state that Prime Video support is arriving “soon” while TechRadar received a confirmation from a Dolby representative the support will launch on August 31, 2018.
It would seem the reason behind this particular date is to coincide with the launch of season one of Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan on Amazon Prime Video. The new series is set to become available on August 31 and reportedly will be the first content offered directly by Amazon that supports Dolby Atmos. Meaning this will be the only content initially available with support for the richer audio format. While this will mark a new chapter for users of the Prime Video streaming service, it is not new in the streaming world in general with both Netflix and VUDU already supporting the Dolby audio solution.
Dolby Atmos fundamentally works very different to previous audio solutions as it places less focus on directing different sounds through different outlets, and more on directing any sound to any location. In other words, while sounds are typically distributed based on the direction of an assigned and location-specific speaker (for example, the speaker channel), Dolby Atmos lets those creating content choose where a sound is heard from - and largely irrespective of the number of channels in the setup. This also includes the ability to have sounds heard from above where a speaker is typically not present in a directional setup. Of course, having support at the content provider level is one thing, but those looking to take advantage of the enriched audio experience will still need Dolby Atmos-enabled hardware as well. Speaking of which it remains unclear what devices will support Dolby Atmos on Prime Video when the feature goes live, and whether this will only be available on select devices or generally available through all Prime Video platform access points to any and all Dolby Atmos-enabled devices. Though, it’s highly likely the newest devices from Amazon’s own Fire TV line will support Dolby Atmos from the get-go, such as the Fire TV Cube.