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Amazon, now offering up streaming episodes of "He-Man" for free to Prime members
Amazon Prime just got even better

For tech geeks that frequent Amazon.com, a Prime membership is a handy tool to have if you like getting your gadgets, groceries, or just about anything else delivered within two days for "free" or overnight for $3.99/item. We put free in quotes because an Amazon Prime membership costs $79/year, but those that order from Amazon frequently usually find the cost an easy pill to swallow.

Now Amazon is making the cost of a Prime membership even more palatable -- the company is now making its Instant Video streaming service free to Prime members. That means that in addition to the free two-day shipping comes access to over 5,000 instant streaming movies and TV shows.

Full details of the service are likely to be revealed by Amazon later today, and we'll keep you updated once we found out more.

Updated 2/22/2011 @ 10:38am

Amazon is now offering up additional details on its new Instant Video streaming for Prime members. The free service is only available to those that actually pay for an Amazon Prime membership – those that receive a free Student or Amazon Mom Prime membership are out of luck.

Also, you won’t have to worry about the price of prime going up with this new feature addition. The price will stay at $79/year for the foreseeable future.

"Millions of Amazon Prime members already enjoy the convenience of free Two-Day Shipping," said Robbie Schwietzer, vice president of Amazon Prime. "Adding unlimited instant access to thousands of movies and TV shows at no additional cost is a great way to give members even more value for their $79 annual Amazon Prime membership."



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selection
By swampthing1117 on 2/22/2011 10:01:30 AM , Rating: 2
I was just looking at the selection of prime eligible titles and it's a pretty poor selection. Doesn't look like new releases are eligible. Looks like roughly the same selection you'd get off netflix streaming. Their ad says 5000 titles but if you click on prime eligible it's only 2100 titles and it was all older stuff. Prime eligible tv shows is only 484 results.

Anyone confirm if new releases and newer movies are out of this program and still pay per view?




RE: selection
By Connoisseur on 2/22/2011 10:58:48 AM , Rating: 2
My thoughts exactly. This looks just like the selection from netflix. Nothing new to see here... I guess it's good for people who don't already have netflix or who want to save an extra 8 or 9 bucks a month.


RE: selection
By swampthing1117 on 2/22/2011 11:14:01 AM , Rating: 3
I dug a little deeper. It's actually WAY WORSE selection than netflix. They don't have a single season of the office for example. Netflix has them all except the newest. Amazon only has the british version on prime. I checked my current instant queue on netflix to amazon prime and out of 90 titles i could only find 4 available on prime.

Terrible selection.


RE: selection
By Wererat on 2/22/2011 11:36:25 AM , Rating: 2
The natural progression for this will be:
1. Customers want more video choices;
2. Amazon adds more, and finds their cost increasing;
3. A corresponding rate hike is announced.

That's all good, though; Netflix could stand a little competition.

Xbox (definitely) and PS3 (presumably) users can stream Amazon videos from a PC that's downloaded the content; Wii users are SOL I think for now.


RE: selection
By Solandri on 2/22/2011 12:48:33 PM , Rating: 2
What kind of Prime account do you have? From what I've been reading, the free student Prime accounts have access to a limited number of older movies (the ones which cost $2.99 for non-Prime people). The paid Prime account has access to them all.

I don't have a Prime account so I can't confirm nor deny. Just trying to get to the bottom of this since I've been toying with the idea of paying the $79 for a Prime account.


RE: selection
By Aaron M on 2/22/2011 2:43:55 PM , Rating: 2
I don't think it's fair to compare it to Netflix. Amazon's offer comes at no additional cost to Prime members. It's such a generous offer, that no one even bothered to discuss the possibility of such a thing, until a leaked screenshot hit the Net.

Anyway, competition is good, no matter which side you choose.


RE: selection
By Azzr34l on 2/22/2011 3:21:43 PM , Rating: 2
I have a regular prime account and I have 2,153 movies available.


Free Prime, too?
By nafhan on 2/22/2011 8:23:39 AM , Rating: 1
As many probably know, you can get Prime for free (at least for a while) if you are a student or parent. Hopefully, those accounts come with free streaming, too. I may be watching some movies tonight if that's the case...




RE: Free Prime, too?
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 2/22/2011 8:28:05 AM , Rating: 2
I've been getting emails saying that the "Free" Prime accounts (Student, Amazon Mom) don't get access to the free videos -- only those that actually pay for the service.


RE: Free Prime, too?
By sc3252 on 2/22/2011 8:34:04 AM , Rating: 2
Correct, just signed up to see if I could... I will have to look at their selection to see if its worth $79 a year, but I have a feeling I will pull the trigger even if its just a few movies here and there.


RE: Free Prime, too?
By nafhan on 2/22/2011 2:40:48 PM , Rating: 3
Thanks. I'll probably still check out the movie selection, but probably won't get a paid Prime account. I'm happy with Netflix for now.

As an aside, Prime was awesome for Christmas shopping this past year. Last minute shopping without going to the @#$&ing mall, yeah!


RE: Free Prime, too?
By JBird7986 on 2/22/2011 10:23:10 AM , Rating: 2
I didn't know about the free accounts, but thanks for telling me, because I had an order pending shipping. Now instead of getting my new EVGA GTX 560 Ti SC either Friday or next week, it should be here by Thursday at no extra cost to me, so thanks for telling me!


TANSTAAFL
By DanNeely on 2/22/2011 9:08:51 AM , Rating: 2
anyone care to bet how long until Amazon jacks the price of prime up?




RE: TANSTAAFL
By xboxist on 2/22/2011 9:45:47 AM , Rating: 2
They could jack it up to $200 and it would still pay for itself, at least the way I order crap from there.


RE: TANSTAAFL
By DanNeely on 2/22/2011 1:13:59 PM , Rating: 2
Even factoring prime shipping new releases so they arrive on the release date instead of being shipping on it and arriving a week later (some of these I'd buy retail if necessary to get asap), my savings from free 2nd day shipping for stuff I actually care about how quickly it arrives is only in the $70-150/year range (depending mostly on how much I procrastinate in gift buying). I probably get at least twice that in free 2nd day shipping, but a lot of the stuff I order isn't time sensitive and I'd be perfectly happy with it being shipped via ground instead.


Xbox 360
By klstay on 2/23/2011 8:49:09 AM , Rating: 2
Too bad watching on Xbox is such a nightmarish experience compared to netflix. Sure, the technically minded will have no problem doing the whole PC thing. That still does not compare with Netflix on Xbox; especially for casual users.




"If you look at the last five years, if you look at what major innovations have occurred in computing technology, every single one of them came from AMD. Not a single innovation came from Intel." -- AMD CEO Hector Ruiz in 2007











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