Amazon has quietly begun offering a monthly subscription to its Amazon Prime service, in a move that will place it in more direct competition with the likes of Netflix and Hulu.

Unofficial Netflix news site Hacking Netflix reported Tuesday morning that a reader had noticed the new pricing, which offers an Amazon Prime subscription for a monthly fee of $7.99.

Previously an Amazon Prime sub cost $79.99 per year, and though the new monthly price will add up to $95.88 annually, some users may prefer the flexibility of going month-to-month.

That may prove especially true for customers who are used to Hulu Plus and Netflix's subscription packages - exactly who Amazon is gunning for.

Hulu turns up the heat with CBS

Amazon may escalate its competition with other streaming video providers, but Hulu isn't about to back down either.

Hulu Plus subscribers will finally have access to CBS programming in January 2013, as a deal between the two was announced Monday.

The non-exclusive partnership will last for multiple years and include more than 2,600 episodes of shows like "Medium," "Numb3rs," "CSI: Miami," "Star Trek," "I Love Lucy" and "The Twilight Zone."

Hulu Plus subscribers won't be the only ones able to take advantage of the new CBS content, as a selection of CBS shows will also be rotated through Hulu's ad-driven free site.

Streaming competition gets dirty

Amazon and Hulu are doing what they can to compete, while Netflix CEO Reed Hastings recently defended unpopular pricing and criticized his competitors' products.

In September, the Netflix CEO called Amazon Prime Instant a "confusing mess," apparently confident that the service is not a threat to Netflix's profits.

But TechRadar noted back in February that "an Amazon Prime monthly subscription service would put the company in direct competition with the current kingpin of home streaming, Netflix," making Tuesday's news particularly interesting.

Hulu, meanwhile, is in the midst of some major shake-ups, if an August memo is anything to go by.

So far, no one service has emerged as clearly superior to the other two, especially with Hulu and Amazon working so hard to compete with Netflix.

With death and taxes the only certainties in life, though, it's best to remain vigilant when it comes to streaming video options.

Via Hacking Netflix, MarketWatch