Amazon to Merge LoveFilm Instant with Amazon Prime
Amazon is folding LoveFilm Instant into its Amazon Prime service, and the question isn't why is Amazon doing this, but why didn't it do it sooner? Amazon acquired LoveFilm in 2011, around the same time that it expanded its Amazon Prime delivery service to include video streaming. While LoveFilm is a major brand in the U.K. and Europe, it didn't make sense for Amazon to keep both.
On February 26, Amazon will combine the two services, meaning that LoveFilm's streaming service will cease to exist and Prime will gain a lot of content. Amazon will now offer Prime for £79 per year, but it's enticing new customers with a one-week promotion where they can get a year of Prime for £49. The service also offers a 30-day free trial.
To compete against rival Netflix, Amazon is promoting its exclusive content. Members will be able to watch movies such as The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Hangover Part II, One Direction: This Is Us, Friends with Benefits, and Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked. Prime will also offer exclusive TV shows such as "The Walking Dead," "Dexter," "Vikings," "Downton Abbey," and "DesperateHousewives," and children's programs that include "Peppa Pig," "Fireman Sam," and "SpongeBob SquarePants." Amazon will soon launch original TV series, as well, hoping for the same success that Netflix has had with "House of Cards" and "Lilyhammer."
Since acquiring LoveFilm, Amazon notes that it has tripled the number of titles available, and added high-definition video and apps for mobile and connected devices. LoveFilm now offers over 15,000 titles.
The service provided movie-lovers with access to new releases not available through online subscription services, but it will soon close for good.
Both the Fire TV and Fire TV Stick will benefit from an over-the-air software upgrade that offers easy access to hotel Wi-Fi networks.
Subscribers in the U.K. and Germany will get HD streaming, a watchlist, and improved searching.
While it doesn't disclose the number of titles gained, LoveFilm will stream movies from Scorsese and Tarantino.
The arrangement offers an unspecified number of movies, available for an unspecified length of time.