Today, Amazon has announced it has launched unlimited, commercial-free, instant streaming for 5,000 movies and TV shows as an additional benefit to Amazon Prime. At $79/year, not only does it undercut Netflix’s Instant-only plan in cost but it also adds the benefit of free two-day shipping to your Prime-enabled Amazon orders. With Redbox also planning to enter the market of streaming movies, Netflix is going to have plenty of competition to keep up with.
Here’s the announcement you’ll see on the Amazon frontpage:
Last Summer, I told you about the free Amazon Prime membership for students and since then they’ve also instituted a program called Amazon Mom, providing free Amazon Prime membership for those people responsible for a baby or young child. I and many others have Amazon Prime thanks to these programs, but will have to upgrade in order to enjoy the Instant streaming collection!
The video quality includes HD shows with 5.1 surround sound. If Amazon Instant Video follows the same path as the Amazon S3 services, it is going to hit the ground running and introduce a number of innovations to the market. It’s already compatible with over 200 devices and will hopefully be adding more quickly. Although it’s currently only available to US members, I imagine that’s one area that will expand quickly.
You can browse the collection of free to Prime members videos and start streaming immediately if you’re already an Amazon Prime member or start a 1 month trial to see if it’s worth it to you. I’m excited to have any competition to Netflix come in and let the consumers benefit by lower prices and greater availability.