Amazon claims it streams more instant video than Hulu or Apple

All gaming aspirations aside, Amazon says it has a good reason for building its new Fire TV set-top box: People really like its streaming video content. The company is claiming that its instant video usage has tripled year over year, surpassing both Apple's and Hulu's instant video numbers. So, what sparked all the growth? Amazon doesn't say specifically, but the press release dedicates a considerable portion of text to lauding its exclusive Prime Instant Video content, its original series and its large catalog of titles available for digital purchase and rental. All well and good, but the announcement is clearly a thinly veiled advertisement for its new hardware -- which is fine, but it does leave us wondering by what margin Amazon is leading its competition. After all, Netflix's standing is conspicuously absent from the reported line-up.