Amazon is looking at adding live TV to its Prime Video service, based on recent job listings. An ad posted for a Product Manager to join the 'Prime Video Linear TV team' makes it seem like more of an open secret than a confidential project, while a report on Protocol quotes an insider as saying Amazon is "actively pursuing" deals around live programming.
The job listing makes it pretty clear what the intent is. Amazon is looking for someone to help "redefine how customers watch 24/7 linear broadcast TV content."
If you're wondering what content that might be, specific reference is made to "TV stations airing programs including sports, news, movies, award shows, special events and TV shows". Amazon also alludes to a "next-gen worry-free Linear TV experience".
As Protocol suggests, it may be that Amazon is looking for additional features that differentiate the service from competitors like Netflix. That said, Hulu does already offer a Live TV package on top of its on-demand streaming offering.
Since the job listing is based in the US, it's unclear whether this just applies to America, or if Amazon has its eyes on international markets as well. Over the last few years, though, Amazon has began streaming live content in different parts of the world, like the US Open tennis tournament, NFL games and Premier League matches.
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Will it work?
It's hard to tell if Amazon is creating something that looks like a more traditional US cable package, here (and whether it'll resemble them in price), or a more curated selection of smaller channels. A 'next-gen' linear TV experience suggests something with a different angle to existing offerings.
While Amazon Prime currently has just a single subscription tier, add-ons are rife for the service. Amazon Prime Video Channels let players top up their subscription with more specific libraries of content from sources like HBO or The Criterion Channel. It's possible live TV could be offered in a similar form.
Until Amazon reveals more, though, it's hard to tell how this fits alongside its current offering.