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Amazon to Stream Obama's Final State of the Union Address

The on-demand video stream will be available starting Wednesday.

Mandel Ngan-Pool/Getty Images

President Barack Obama’s final State of the Union address will be available to stream via Amazon Video — a first that recognizes the changes in American’s media viewing habits.

Amazon Video will make Tuesday night’s speech available free and on-demand across various Internet-connected devices beginning Wednesday. Obama’s past addresses also will be available.

“Whether you use a smart TV, Web browser, mobile device, or tablet there’s a way for you to watch the President’s speech as it happens and on-demand,” wrote White House Chief Digital Officer Jason Goldman in a blog post describing the various ways people can see Obama’s speech.

In an interview, Goldman said the State of the Union has evolved to embrace new media platforms and novel ways to reach Americans voters.

In 1923, Calvin Coolidge’s voice was heard in living rooms across the country in the first presidential address to be broadcast on radio. Twenty-four years later, Harry Truman was the first to deliver a televised State of the Union speech.

President George W. Bush was the first to offer a live webcast of the speech in 2002. Obama, whose campaign deftly harnessed social media in his successful 2008 election bid, was the first president to offer real-time excerpts of the State of the Union on Facebook and Twitter, live GIFs on Tumblr, six-second video snippets on Vine and photos on Instagram.

Goldman said the administration is looking to connect with audiences however they choose to engage — whether through Internet video streaming services, delivered without need of a cable or satellite subscription, or across social media.

“We tend to approach this with incredible enthusiasm and excitement about the new tools and ways to accomplish our mission of connecting people with purpose,” said Goldman, a former Twitter executive.

The President’s seven previous State of the Union addresses, with line-by-line annotations, can be found on the White House’s State of the Union website. It offers more context on specific proposals and a behind-the-scenes look at how the speeches came together.

Here’s a video of Obama, offering a preview of his remarks — which will take a big-picture view of the challenges ahead for America, rather than a grocery list of legislative initiatives for the coming year. The State of the Union begins at 6 pm PT on Tuesday.

This article originally appeared on

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