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Amazon to roll out ads on Prime Video in late January

Customers can opt-out of commercial interruptions by paying extra to remove them.

Customers can opt-out of commercial interruptions by paying extra to remove them.

A streaming TV viewer watches a Prime Video show on a tablet. (Courtesy image)
A streaming TV viewer watches an Amazon Prime Video show on a tablet. (Courtesy image)

Amazon has started notifying its Prime members that they will soon see advertisements when they stream content from the supplemental service Prime Video.

This week, Amazon began e-mailing customers with a notice that content streamed from Prime Video will contain short commercial interruptions, starting January 29, 2024.

Prime members get access to Prime Video included at no extra cost. A Prime membership costs $14 per month or $140 per year in the United States. Customers who want to remove advertising from Prime Video will have to pay an extra $3 per month for the privilege of uninterrupted streaming.

But Amazon is hoping most members will simply put up with the ad interruptions, saying advertisements “will allow us to continue investing in compelling content and keep increasing that investment over a long period of time.”

Amazon joins a growing list of commercial streamers that have turned to advertising as a way to generate additional revenue from their premium subscribers. The Walt Disney Company (Hulu, Disney Plus), Netflix, Warner Bros Discovery (Max, Discovery Plus) and AMC Networks have all introduced ad-based tiers of their services over the past three years.

Once Amazon incorporates ads into Prime Video, it will effectively leave just three major commercial-free streaming services on the market: Apple TV Plus, MGM Plus (formerly Epix) and Starz.

But Prime members receive benefits beyond Prime Video streaming as part of their subscription: They also get free two-day shipping on thousands of items in the Amazon marketplace, grocery delivery (in cities where it is available), unlimited photo storage through Amazon Photos and access to millions of songs on-demand through Amazon Music, among other perks.

Amazon offers a free 30-day trial to Prime and Prime Video when new customers sign up to try it by clicking or tapping here.

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is a nationally-recognized, award-winning journalist who has covered the business of media, technology, radio and television for more than 10 years. He is the publisher of The Desk and contributes to Know Techie, Digital Content Next and StreamTV Insider. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, the Walt Disney Company, McNaughton Newspapers and Tribune Broadcasting.
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