Amazon Prime Video to get its biggest shake up in years

Prime Video will start to show ads as part of a normal Prime subscription

Amazon Fire TV 2-Series
(Image credit: Amazon)

Amazon will soon introduce adverts to its Prime Video streaming service and you'll have to pay more to avoid them.

For many years, even before the name changed from Lovefilm to Prime Video, Amazon's service has been available for free as part of Prime membership. That meant, for one flat fee you could get unrestricted streaming access to all the shows and movies, as well as free same- or next-day deliveries, access to exclusive deals on Amazon Prime Day (and Prime Day 2), and a whole stack of other benefits.

But that is about to change. As previously rumoured, Amazon Prime Video content will include commercials from "early 2024". The company says that it plans for fewer ads than conventional TV broadcasters, but you won't be able to avoid them.

That is, unless you pay an additional $2.99 per month (UK pricing is yet to be announced). Doing so will effectively allow you to continue enjoying the service ad-free, as you do now.

This will kick off in the US, UK, Canada and Germany initially, then follow in France, Italy, Spain, Mexico and Australia later in the year.

"We will email Prime members several weeks before ads are introduced into Prime Video with information on how to sign up for the ad-free option if they would like," said Amazon on its news site.

In many ways, this is not a massive surprise. Prime Video's streaming rivals, such as Disney+ and Netflix, each have ad-supported tiers, so it was inevitable that Amazon would follow suit.

And, in comparison, less than $3 per month extra seems fair. Prime members still get a great added benefit in the amount of content available on the platform, even with advertising.

The move will leave Apple TV+ as one of the few major services without an advert-backed option. However, Apple doesn't yet have the wealth of shows and films offered by its peers.

Prime Video's new tiered structure isn't the only change to hit Prime members recently. Amazon has also added a fee to some Prime deliveries, with same-day items under £20 now incurring a £1.99 delivery charge.

It's not much, to be honest, and plenty can't get same-day deliveries in their areas anyway, but it's a clear indication that the retailer is finally looking to make a little on the side of what has been an unbelievable offer over the years.

Rik Henderson
News Editor

Rik is T3’s news editor, which means he looks after the news team and the up-to-the-minute coverage of all the hottest gadgets and products you’ll definitely want to read about. And, with more than 35 years of experience in tech and entertainment journalism, including editing and writing for numerous websites, magazines, and newspapers, he’s always got an eye on the next big thing.

Rik also has extensive knowledge of AV, TV streaming and smart home kit, plus just about everything to do with games since the late 80s. Prior to T3, he spent 13 years at Pocket-lint heading up its news team, and was a TV producer and presenter on such shows as Channel 4's GamesMaster, plus Sky's Games World, Game Over, and Virtual World of Sport.