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YouTube Star Michelle Phan Comes to Amazon's Fire TV

The beauty star and her Icon network want a new platform to conquer.

Icon Network/Beachfront Media
Peter Kafka covers media and technology, and their intersection, at Vox. Many of his stories can be found in his Kafka on Media newsletter, and he also hosts the Recode Media podcast.

YouTube made her famous. Now Michelle Phan wants to conquer Amazon.

The fashion video star has brought her Icon Network app, which features clips from her and other beauty/makeup advisers, to Amazon’s Fire TV platform. She’s not the first person to succeed on YouTube and head to Amazon — gadget vlogger Andru Edwards has already brought his Gear Live network there — but she’s by far the most prominent.

The fact that Phan is the biggest name to head from YouTube to Amazon Fire TV may say something about usage for the streaming video platform, which launched more than a year ago.

But it’s not a surprise to see YouTube stars headed outside the world’s biggest video site. They’ve been looking for other ways to make money — since YouTube often doesn’t deliver as much as they think it should — for years.

Video tech company Beachfront Media built the Amazon app for Phan and her backers, as well as apps it runs on other platforms like Apple’s iOS; it also brought Dormtainment and Watch Mojo, two other YouTube natives, to Amazon.

Beachfront makes money by selling ads that run on the apps. CEO Frank Sinton says the split varies, but that creators keep between 50 percent and 70 percent of the revenue from the apps.

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