For the first time, US Amazon Prime customers will be able to pay for Amazon Prime Video separately from Amazon Prime (the free one-day delivery service) and they'll be able to do it on a monthly basis.
Previously US customers could only access Amazon Prime Video through a yearly subscription of $100 for video alongside other Prime services including one-day delivery.
Until now there has been no monthly payment plan, nor has there been an option to pay for video streaming separately from other Prime services.
This might have worked well for consumers who know they're going to stick with their subscription for the whole twelve months, but doesn't work as well for a viewer who wants to subscribe on a more ad-hoc basis for a month at a time .
Engadget has calculated that paying monthly for the full Prime option (including one-day delivery) will pay an extra $32 over the course of a year, but considering most companies give a discount for paying yearly rather than monthly this isn't too surprising.
UK pricing of Amazon's services currently works differently from the US. Amazon UK already price their video services on a monthly basis as a result of having acquired this model from LoveFilm, whom they purchased in 2011. Prime delivery services meanwhile are priced yearly.
When asked for comment Amazon refused to say whether this change will have any implications for the pricing models of its services in the UK.
The Netflix Model
The move appears to be intended to position Amazon Prime Video as more of a direct competitor to rival Netflix. The two have been trading blows over their increasing production and broadcast of content.
Just last week we reported that Netflix had picked up the rights to stream the BBC's new series of Top Gear, while Amazon reportedly paid $250m (£175m) to secure ex-Top Gear presenters Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May for their own car show.
Netflix has always operated on a monthly subscription model, the prices of which recently increased from $7.99 to $9.99 in the US (from £5.99 to £7.49 in the UK).
- If you're in the UK, check out our list of the top five sci-fi movies to stream on Amazon Prime Video right now.
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