In last Sunday’s edition of the weekly Screentime newsletter, Bloomberg’s Lucas Shaw provides an analysis of the state of Amazon Prime Video. Despite Amazon being the global leader in e-commerce, its status in streaming has been lower profile.
Shaw suggests that Amazon’s overall success has allowed it to fly under the radar in streaming, since it is not under the same pressure to trumpet its successes, unlike major streaming competitors such as Netflix and Disney, who have pointed to their success in streaming to boost company image, and stock price.
Access to Prime Video content is included as part of Amazon Prime membership, along with free shipping on many on-line purchases and discounts on grocery purchases at Whole Foods. The value of the bundle overall leads to Amazon having many fewer drop offs than “pure” streaming services. Therefore, Amazon can afford to play out a long-term strategy, including multi-billion dollar deals such as the purchase of MGM Studios or picking up broadcast rights from the NFL for Thursday Night Football.
Amazon Studios has also been building up its wins with original films and series such as The Thermal List, The Boys, and Outer Range, which Nielson reports have all drawn large audiences. And now comes “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power,” Amazon’s Prime’s entry into a marquee fantasy franchise. The immense resources of Amazon coupled with the lack of pressure for Prime Video to turn a quarterly profit in the short term are allowing the company to build up its Prime Video offering methodically, program by program.