Are you using Amazon’s free streaming TV app called IMDb Television? By the end of the month, you will be watching a show called Amazon free In place.
The e-commerce giant announced last week which it is renaming IMDb TV effective April 27, 2022.
And with that puny name change could come content changes that shape how we view free streaming content in the future.
Here are the details of the announcement and what it may mean for the future of ad-supported video-on-demand (AVOD) content.
IMDb TV will soon become Amazon Freevee
IMDb TV, which is originally a derivative of the popular IMDb website (Internet Movie Database), which serves as a benchmark for all Hollywood credits, will be rebranded by Amazon Freevee on April 27.
Here is a brief overview of what you need to know.
What is IMDb TV in the first place?
IMDb TV is a free streaming service that offers on-demand movies and TV shows. In exchange for the freebies, you are supposed to watch the advertisements that are sprinkled throughout the content.
If you want to know more, you can get a detailed explanation of the Clark team’s service here.
What changes will Amazon make beyond the name?
Amazon plans to increase the amount of original content created just for Freevee. As part of the announcement, Amazon said it will expand its library of original content on the service by 70% in 2022 alone.
There are a few factors that are likely contributing to the push for improvements on this service.
First, Amazon acquired Hollywood studio MGM in an $8.5 billion mega-deal earlier this year. It therefore has more infrastructure to create original content in-house.
And two, Amazon has been growing its user base for IMDb TV quite aggressively over the past few quarters. Monthly active users have tripled on the platform over the past two years according to Bloomberg.
“We look forward to building on this momentum with a growing roster of inventive and broadly engaging originals, and we’re excited to establish Freevee as the premier AVOD service with a sought-after content audience,” said Jennifer Salke, Head of Content. ‘Amazon Studios, in the Release.
Simply put: there are more eyeballs on this service than ever before, and the improved content will bring even more consumers to the free service, which should generate more ad revenue for the company.
What kind of original content can we expect on Freevee?
According The Hollywood ReporterFreevee currently has the following projects underway:
- Bosch: legacy
- On springs
- High school
The report says some additional movie and TV plans for Freevee may be announced in May. All of these would be added to the existing library of original content.
Here is a preview of the original content already available via IMDb TV:
As mentioned above, the acquisition of MGM is likely to generate new content opportunities for Freevee in the future.
Keep in mind that producing original content is a big shift in strategy for the free streaming space, which is mostly filled with “old reruns” of TV shows and movies from yesteryear on services like Pluto, Tubi TV, and even IMDb TV itself.
Is it the same as Amazon Prime Video?
Prime Video is another streaming service produced by Amazon. It’s not the same as Freevee and shouldn’t be directly impacted by this announcement, at least not in terms of how you pay for and watch content on the subscription service.
Amazon Prime subscribers get access to Prime Video as part of their subscriptions, but streamers can also pay for Prime Video as a standalone product. Access to Prime Video gives streamers access to original, ad-free content that won’t be available on Freevee.
There may be opportunities for Prime Video and Freevee to collaborate in the future, but they are separate services.
Clark Howard is a fan of ad-supported free streaming
It’s probably no surprise to loyal Clark Howard readers and listeners that the money expert is a big fan of the free streaming movement.
He recently spoke about the emergence of this type of service as the “next frontier” for streaming on an episode of The Clark Howard Podcast.
Consumers are starting to feel the pressure when it comes to monthly dues for video-on-demand streaming services like Netflix, HBO Max, and Disney+. Subscriptions to the three I mentioned could cost you close to $50 per month after taxes.
Clark thinks consumers are reluctant enough that content giants like Amazon, Disney, Paramount and NBC are considering using ad-supported content as a way to appeal to consumers who are tired of footing the bill for a life without advertising.
Amazon’s actions here seem to support that notion, and Clark says it’s time to take advantage of the free options and put some money back in your wallet by canceling streaming subscriptions you don’t use often and replacing in your life with things like Freevee.
“I really want you to think about this at a time when we’re going through cost-cutting in so many different places because of the inflationary cycle we’re in in the United States,” Clark says. “It’s a way to get money back into your life through your monthly expenses.”
You can watch Clark talk more about this topic here.
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