Amazon Video

"Unbox" redirects here. For the computer science term relating to data structures, see Object type (object-oriented programming) § Unboxing. For the unpacking of new products, see Unboxing.
Amazon Video
Type of site
Traded as NASDAQ: AMZN
Headquarters United States
Area served United States, United Kingdom, Japan, Germany, Austria
Industry Internet
Subsidiaries Video Direct
Alexa rank Decrease 7 (As of 6 August 2016)
Registration Required
Launched September 7, 2006 (2006-09-07)
Current status Active

Amazon Video is an Internet video on demand service developed, owned and operated by It offers television shows and films for rental or purchase and as part of Amazon's Prime subscription, selected titles can be viewed exclusively to full Prime or Prime Video members, in which Video membership allows viewing without full Prime. Like competitors, Amazon has pursued a number of exclusive content deals to differentiate its service, including a multi-year licensing deal with HBO in the United States.[1]

Launched on 7 September 2006 as Amazon Unbox in the United States, the service grew with its expanding library, and added the Prime Video membership with the development of Prime. It was then renamed as Amazon Instant Video and Demand. After acquiring the local streaming and DVD-by-mail service LoveFilm in 2011, Prime Video was added to Prime in the United Kingdom, Germany and Austria in 2014, a move that angered some Prime UK members as the bundling was nonnegotiable with a 61% increase in subscription fee.[2]

In the UK, Germany and Austria, Prime Video has been available on a monthly subscription of £5.99 or €7.99 per month, continuing the plan of LoveFilm Instant.[3] The service was previously available in Norway, Denmark and Sweden in 2012, but was discontinued in 2013.[4] In 18 April 2016, Amazon split Prime Video from Amazon Prime in the US for $8.99/m[5] The service also hosts Amazon Original content alongside titles on Video as well.


The service debuted on September 7, 2006 as Amazon Unbox in the United States.[6] On September 4, 2008, the service was renamed Amazon Video on Demand. The Unbox name still refers to the local program,[7][8] which as of August 2014 is no longer available for downloading purchased instant videos. On February 22, 2011, the service rebranded as Amazon Instant Video and added access to 5,000 movies and TV shows for Amazon Prime members.[9][10] On September 4, 2012, Amazon signed a deal with pay-TV channel Epix to feature movies on their streaming service, in a move to rival their competitor Netflix.[11] Additionally, in November 2013, Amazon premiered the comedies Alpha House and Betas, which are original series available exclusively online via the Prime Instant Video service. Amazon offered the first three episodes of both series at once for free, with each subsequent episode released weekly thereafter for Prime members.[12]

In February 2014, Amazon announced that the streaming service of its UK subsidiary LoveFilm would be folded into the Instant Video service on 26 February 2014.[13][14] In January 2015, Transparent became the first show produced by Amazon Studios to win a major award and the first series from a streaming video service to win the Golden Globe Award for Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy.[15]

On July 30, 2015, Amazon announced that they had hired Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, and James May to produce an untitled motoring show for Amazon Prime Video that would later be named The Grand Tour. Neither Jeff Bezos nor had stated how much Clarkson, Hammond, or May are being paid to produce the programme via their production company W. Chump & Sons, but Jeff Bezos stated that the deal was "very expensive, but worth it".[16] The budget for the show has not officially been announced, but Andy Wilman, the former executive producer of Top Gear stated that each episode would have a budget of around £4.5 million, nine times larger than Top Gear's budget.[17] Also in July, Amazon announced plans to expand the service into India.[18]

In September 2015 the word "Instant" was dropped from its title in the US, and it was renamed simply Amazon Video.[19]

Amazon announced in November 2016 that it planned to stream The Grand Tour globally, although it did not imply whether the full Amazon Video service would begin a wider international rollout similarly to Netflix.[20]

In November 2016, the Wall Street Journal and numerous other media outlets were reporting that Amazon was in discussion with various sports leagues (MLB, NFL, NBA, MLS, NHL, WSL, the ACC, MLL, NLL, IPL, etc) about providing a sports package streaming TV service option for Amazon Prime members. James DeLorenzo, who joined the company in March 2016 as head of sports video channels, is spearheading the talks. He is the former VP and GM of Sports Illustrated Digital. Sunil Dave, a former Dish Network executive, is providing negotiations support. Amazon has not decided if the sports package will be free with a Prime membership or will be offered to Prime members for an additional fee.[21][22][23][24]


Video quality

Depending on the device, Amazon supports up to 1080p (HD) streaming with 5.1 Dolby Digital or Dolby Digital Plus audio. For titles that are only available for purchase (and not included in a customer's Amazon Prime subscription), the HD option is often offered at an additional price. Amazon Video supports 4K (UHD) and High Dynamic Range (HDR) streaming, beginning with its original content.[25]


Amazon Video is currently only available to residents of the United States, United Kingdom, Japan, Germany and Austria.[26][27] There is also a rising trend among those living outside Amazon Video's available countries of using a VPN to get around the geographical restrictions.[28] Customers of Amazon Video can stream on the web using an HTML5 player supported in the Chrome, IE11 and Microsoft Edge browsers, or using Microsoft Silverlight[29] in Firefox and Safari.

Use on various TVs, Blu-ray players and consoles (including Panasonic, LG, Samsung and other TVs) requires a broadband connection. Amazon Video is also available on recent PlayStation, Xbox, Wii and Wii U video game consoles.

On October 1, 2015, Amazon announced that Chromecast and Apple TV products were banned from sale on its online marketplace effective October 29, 2015. Amazon argued that this was to reduce "customer confusion", as these devices do not support the Amazon Video ecosystem.[30]


Manufacturer Product Type Quality Notes Ref
Video Audio Kindle Fire Tablet 1080p Up to Dolby Atmos support
Fire Phone Smartphone 1080p N/A Discontinued on Amazon website
Fire TV Digital media player Up to 4K Up to Dolby Digital 7.1 support [31]
Fire TV Stick Up to 1080p
Apple Inc. iPhone Smartphone Up to 1080p N/A
iPad Tablet Up to 4K Up to loudspeaker support [32][33]
Apple TV Digital media player 1080p N/A Compatible with an iOS device in AirPlay
Google Android Mobile operating system Varies Application available on Google Play. Varies through device and version. [34]
LG 2010+ models Smart television Only select 2010 LG Smart TV and Blu-ray player models and up
Microsoft Xbox 360 Home video game console Up to 1080p Up to Dolby Digital 5.1 support May vary depending on console specifications and models
Xbox One Up to 1080p 7.1 surround sound support
Nintendo Wii 480i N/A
Wii U 720p 5.1 Linear PCM

Analog stereo

DSi Handheld game console N/A N/A Any model
3DS nHD Stereo
2DS nHD Mono
Roku Roku Digital media player Up to 1080p HDMI out [36]
Roku 2 Up to 1080p
Roku LT Up to 720p
Roku 3 Up to 1080p
Roku 4 Up to 4K
Samsung 2010+ models Smart television Varies Only select 2010 Samsung Smart TV and Blu-ray player models and up
Sony PlayStation 3 Home video game console 1080p LCPM

Dolby Digital 5.1

PlayStation 4 HDMI N/A [35]
PlayStation Vita Handheld game console nHD Stereo
PlayStation TV Microconsole HDMI out 2-channel LCPM

See also


  1. Kleinman, Alexis (2014-04-23). "Amazon Prime Just Got Way Better With A Ton Of Old HBO Shows". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 2014-04-23.
  2. Ruth Lythe (February 26, 2014). "Amazon Prime customers angered at unwanted upgrade as internet giant hikes cost of subscription by £30 a year". Daily Mail.
  3. Amazon Prime, Prime is Fast Delivery and More, Looking for the Prime Video Monthly Membership? "After your free trial, Prime Video is just £5.99/month. You can cancel your membership at any time". Retrieved 16 June 2016.
  4. Lawler, Ryan. "Amazon's LOVEFiLM Pulls Its Subscription DVD And Streaming Service Out Of Scandinavia". TechCrunch.
  5. Video streaming race heats up, Amazon now offers its Prime Video service independent of Prime subscription for $8.99/mo 9 to 5 Mac, April 18, 2016
  6. " Investor Relations: Press Release".
  7. "Amazon Media Room: News Release".
  8. " Help: Amazon Instant Video".
  9. Christina Warren2011-02-22 12:45:05 UTC (2011-02-22). "HANDS ON: Amazon's Prime Instant Video". Retrieved 2013-11-27.
  10. "Amazon Media Room: Press Releases".
  11. Bloomberg News. September 4, 2012. "Amazon Adds Movies to Streaming Service in New Challenge to Netflix."
  12. "Amazon's Original Series "Alpha House" Debuts Friday". The Motley Fool. Associated Press. Retrieved 25 November 2013.
  13. "Amazon takes on Netflix with rebrand of LoveFilm video-on-demand service". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 February 2014.
  14. Mance, Henry (21 February 2014). "Amazon finds less passionate name for Lovefilm streaming service". Retrieved 21 February 2014.
  15. "AMAZON.COM ANNOUNCES FOURTH QUARTER SALES UP 15% TO $29.33 BILLION" (XBRL). United States Securities and Exchange Commission. January 29, 2015.
  16. "Amazon boss says Jeremy Clarkson's Top Gear follow-on show 'expensive but worth it'". The Guardian. The Guardian. Retrieved 16 August 2015.
  17. "Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May's new Amazon Prime show has an absolutely insane budget". Retrieved 7 August 2015.
  18. "Amazon readies $5 billion chest for bigger play in India, to launch subscription-based ecommerce services". Economic Times. Retrieved 22 July 2015.
  19. Soper, Taylor. "Amazon drops 'Instant' from 'Instant Video,' streamlining its streaming brand". GeekWire. Retrieved 5 September 2015.
  20. "Amazon Prime Video is finally going global to give Netflix some serious competition". TechCrunch. Retrieved 18 November 2016.
  21. Spangler, Todd (November 21, 2016). "Amazon Wants Live-Streaming Sports Rights for Prime Video, but What Will It Really Be Able to Secure?". Variety. Retrieved November 23, 2016.
  22. Shalini, Ramachandran (November 22, 2016). "Amazon Explores Possible Premium Sports Package With Prime Membership: Has held talks for live game rights with leagues including NBA, MLB, NFL and MLS". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved November 23, 2016.
  23. Crum, Rex (November 22, 2016). "Biz Break: Amazon's looking at adding live sports to Prime video service". San Jose Mercury News. Retrieved November 23, 2016.
  24. "Amazon reportedly explores sports package with Prime membership". Seattle: KIRO 7. November 22, 2016. Retrieved November 23, 2016.
  25. Luke Edwards. "Amazon is going 4K and bringing Prime Instant Video to Android". Pocket-lint.
  26. Nick Patrick. "Where Can You Get Amazon Prime Video?". Stream Sidekick.
  27. Filme und Serien kaufen, Retrieved 29 June 2016.
  28. "Amazon Prime Video Not Available In Your Country? Here's How To Get It". Retrieved 2016-08-23.
  29. Amazon Plans an Online Store for Movies and TV Shows
  30. "Amazon Will Ban Sale of Apple, Google Video-Streaming Devices". Bloomberg News. October 1, 2015. Retrieved 1 October 2015.
  31. "Amazon Fire TV".
  32. "Amazon's Instant Video iOS app now lets you stream to Apple TV via AirPlay — Tech News and Analysis". 2013-09-17. Retrieved 2013-11-27.
  33. "What are the production costs for Top Gear?". Quora.
  34. Amazon Brings Prime Instant Video To All Android Phones In US, UK And Germany. Sep 9, 2014 Sarah Perez
  35. 1 2 Lardinois, Frederic. May 29, 2012. "Amazon Instant Video Comes to Xbox 360."
  36. Roku. "Roku - Streaming TV & Media Player". Roku.
  37. Jack Buser (April 3, 2012). "PS3: The First Console to Offer Amazon Instant Video". Retrieved June 15, 2012.

1. By Spencer Soper :


External links

This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 12/4/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.