Amazon Launches Partners Program, Becomes OTT Subscription Hub
Amazon has launched a new phase in its efforts to build up Amazon Prime: The Streaming Partners Program lets Prime subscribers add other OTT services from within their Prime memberships. The service debuts with participation from Showtime, Starz, A+E Network, AMC, and more. Showtime and Starz subscriptions go for $8.99 per month.
How people watch television is changing, notes Michael Paull, Amazon's vice president of digital video, adding that people need an easier way to subscribe to and manage multiple OTT subscriptions.
Amazon emphasizes that the program helps both partners and subscribers: Partners can easily reach active OTT subscribers, while subscribers can more easily watch favorite programs and channels. Perks for subscribers include free trials, discount pricing, new episodes available at the time of broadcast, one watchlist for all subscriptions, simple self-service cancellation, and the convenience of having one bill to pay. Amazon has created a webpage to show partner subscription offerings.
Partners can use Amazon's backend to manage their services. Amazon will be responsible for driving new customer acquisition, processing subscriptions, handing customer service, and distributing content to hundreds of devices.
“By marrying Showtime with the powerhouse retail capabilities of Amazon, we continue to greatly expand our footprint, making sure our service is available to new subscribers whenever and however they want to watch us,” says David Nevins, president of Showtime Networks.
As early as December, Amazon Prime customers will be able to sign up for other streaming video services from within their Prime accounts.
The move punishes Apple and Google for not supporting Amazon Prime video streaming, but so far Amazon is the loser.
It's a price war in the Pacific, with Amazon Prime Instant Video selling for half of Netflix's lowest-priced tier.