Amazon Prime Video is introducing ads to its content beginning in 2024, requiring users to pay an extra $2.99 per month to go ad-free.
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Amazon announced that ads will be introduced to Prime Video in early 2024.
Users can go ad-free by paying an additional $2.99 per month.
The new subscription tier is indicative of a shifting streaming landscape.
Amazon Prime Video subscribers should consume as much content as possible this weekend before they’ll have to pay more for that privilege.
The streaming service announced on Friday that advertisements will be introduced to its library of shows and movies beginning in early 2024 across the US, UK, Germany, and Canada. This change will then roll over to France, Italy, Spain, Mexico, and Australia, later that year.
Of course, with the introduction of ads, comes the introduction of a new ad-free subscription — Prime Video users can opt to pay $2.99 more per month for an ad-free membership, the company said in a statement.
Amazon said that Prime Video subscribers will receive an email in the weeks leading up to introduction of ads with information on how to switch over to the ad-free option.
This price hike arrives as the streaming market finds itself struggling to turn a profit, after years of relatively low prices. Accordingly, consumers should prepare themselves to potentially pony up for their favorite services.
“For a decade in streaming, an enormously valuable amount of quality content has been given away well below fair-market value, and I think that’s in the process of being corrected,” Gunnar Wiedenfels, Warner Bros. Discovery’s CFO said at a media conference a little over a week ago.
Currently a standalone Prime Video subscription costs $8.99 per month. The $2.99 increase is in line with other services that have raised prices recently. Both Peacock and and Paramount+ raised their ad-free subscription prices by $2, from $9.99 to $11.99, this past July.
At the end of August, Mark Schilsky, a sales specialist at Bernstein Research, a Wall Street firm, put the increased cost of streaming into perspective.
When grouped together, Disney+, Hulu, Netflix, Max, Peacock, Paramount+, and Apple TV+ subscriptions went from $76.43 a month to $94.43 a month in the past year.
Of course, as Insider’s Nathan McAlone puts it — the end of cheap streaming is not here yet, but rather the end of cheap, ad-free streaming.
For those willing to endure the interruption, it is still possible to put together a bundle of the top services — including Netflix, Hulu/Disney+, and MAX — for just under $50.