Amazon pick date for ads on Prime Video streaming service

Amazon has revealed the date for when it will start including ads on TV shows and movies on its Prime Video streaming service: January 29.

The e-commerce giant announced in September that it would bring ads to its video streaming service, saying at the time that the change would come in “early 2024.”

But in a widely reported email to Prime subscribers this week, Amazon revealed the January 29 commencement date for ads, promising that the new system will allow it to “continue investing in compelling content, and keep increasing that investment over a long period of time.”

Ads in Prime Video movies and TV shows will be introduced first for viewers in the U.S., U.K., Germany, and Canada, followed later in 2024 by France, Italy, Spain, Mexico, and Australia.

The price of Prime membership will remain the same for now, but to banish the ads, Prime subscribers in the U.S. will need to pay an extra $2.99 per month (or a similar amount in other countries).

The launch of ads for Amazon’s Prime Video service follows similar moves by streaming rivals such as Netflix, which introduced an ad tier in November last year for $7 per month and which, in the space of a year, reached 15 million global monthly active users.

Disney+ also launched an ad tier 12 months ago for $8 per month, while Hulu and Peacock also offer ad-based tiers costing $8 and $6 per month, respectively.

Amazon said it plans to show “meaningfully fewer ads than linear TV and other streaming TV providers” when the ad-based service launches next month.

In the U.S., Prime membership costs $15 per month or $139 per year if you pay annually. Besides video streaming, the service offers free and faster shipping, music streaming, and e-book content.