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|Amazon Prime Video||$8.99/month||Access to more than 24,000 titles that includes exclusive award-winning content; ability to stream on two screens at once.|
|Amazon Prime Annual||$139.00/year||All of the content that is available on Prime Video plus free delivery, access to special deals, the ability to stream ad-free music, Prime Gaming, Prime Reading, Amazon Photos, Prime Try Before You Buy and Rx Savings.|
|Amazon Prime Monthly||$14.99/month||All of the content that is available on Prime Video plus free delivery, access to special deals, the ability to stream ad-free music, Prime Gaming, Prime Reading, Amazon Photos, Prime Try Before You Buy and Rx Savings on a month-to-month plan.|
What Is Amazon Prime Video?
Chances are good that you are already extremely familiar with Amazon. It’s a massive online retailer at which you can find pretty nearly any product under the sun.
This is one company that seems determined to take over every aspect of modern life. From smart home devices to grocery delivery, they have virtually everything covered.
That includes an outstanding streaming service that features a ton of prestige content. Adding to the impressiveness of Amazon Prime Video is its technical capabilities. As an example, 4K HDR streaming is widely available on the service. Plus, you can always download titles to watch later without an Internet connection.
Amazon Prime Video is recognized for the quality of its original content, but that’s not all you get. You can watch WNBA and Thursday Night Football games live. Most of the programming is available without extra cost, but you also can either rent or buy content that is not readily available through Prime Video.
This streaming service boasts a growing library of original content that has proven to be incredibly popular. Amazon Prime Video doesn’t have quite as many originals as Netflix, but it is gaining all the time. A membership also grants access to a pretty good collection of other TV shows and movies, though some titles have been lost to competing services.
How Much Does Amazon Prime Video Cost?
You have options if you want to access the Amazon Prime Video library. The lowest cost approach is to choose a monthly membership, which currently is priced at $8.99 per month. This subscription only gives you access to the movies and television series that are on Amazon Prime Video.
Your other option is to pay $14.99 per month, or $139 for the year, to get a full Amazon Prime subscription. Some of the perks that come with this option include free two-day or same-day shipping, discounts at Whole Foods, a membership in Twitch Prime, music streaming and more. If you are a Prime member, you also get access to exclusive Prime Day deals, which can be spectacular.
Whether you choose to become a fully fledged Amazon Prime subscriber or decide that the Amazon Prime Video membership is enough for you, you will receive the same access to ad-free content. Amazon does present pre-roll, in-house ads before the start of each program, but you can skip these.
Discount subscriptions are available to some people. For example, students can grab a membership for just $7.49 per month or $59 for the year. Those who are eligible for qualified government assistance can get a membership for just $6.99 per month. These memberships have all of the same perks and identical access as the full-price Amazon Prime subscriptions.
Add-Ons and Extras
If you subscribe to Amazon Prime Video, you will have the option to choose any number of add-on subscriptions. Many users decide to include PBS Documentaries for $5.99 per month or Starz for $8.99 per month. Showtime and Cinemax are other popular choices at $8.99 and $9.99 per month, respectively.
Of course, it’s possible to add almost any streaming subscription on top of a Prime Video membership. Choose Discovery+, HBO, NBA League Pass, BET+, BritBox, AcornTV, IFC Films, CBS All Access and many others.
The company calls all of these add-ons “Amazon Channels.” However, they are not available to users who only have an Amazon Prime Video subscription. You need to have a full Amazon Prime membership to take advantage of add-ons.
How Can You Watch Amazon Prime Video?
You can view programming on Prime Video using any web browser. Watch from your Android or iOS device or any media streaming device such as Roku, Fire TV, Chromecast and Apple TV. Game consoles from Xbox and PlayStation are compatible with Prime Video as are smart televisions. If you have Windows 10, you can download the Amazon Prime Video app. Offline downloads are available to all subscribers, and the service includes the IMDb-provided X-Ray panel for learning more about who and what you’re watching.
What Can You Watch on Prime Video?
One of the main reasons to choose a Prime Video subscription is that it gives you access to Amazon’s original programming. The streamer does not have as many original shows as Netflix or HBO Max, but what is available is generally of high quality and very much worth watching.
Among the original content that is loved by critics and viewers are The Boys, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Fleabag, Upload, Bosch, The Wheel of Time, Catastrophe, Utopia, Electric Dreams, Tales from the Loop, Flack, Patriot, Good Omens, Jack Ryan, Hanna, Invincible, Hunters and Homecoming. Amazon recently released The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power as well, making it a popular destination for those who love fantasy adaptations.
Of course, Amazon Prime Video is made up of more than just original television series. You’ll also find familiar shows from other networks such as Mr. Robot, The Americans, Hannibal, Chuck and Burn Notice. Some shows that used to be available on Prime are no longer there. These include The X-Files, Veronica Mars and Justified, all of which have gone to Hulu. With NBC and HBO having their own streaming services, some of the programming from these networks will be leaving Amazon eventually.
If you want to watch a movie, you will probably be pleasantly surprised by the selection on Prime Video. Many of these are recent and popular releases, but you’ll discover many classic films as well. Moreover, Amazon is producing its own feature films. Notable titles from recent years include The Vast of Night, Troop Zero, The Report, My Spy, Manchester by the Sea, Honey Boy, The Big Sick and Blow the Man Down. One of Amazon’s movies, Sound of Metal, even won an Academy Award.
If you are looking at sheer numbers when it comes to movie titles, you’ll be thrilled to discover that Amazon Prime Video boasts more films than any other service. However, many of those movies are B-level or below. Amazon’s recent purchase of MGM may mean that its movie library is about to get even bigger.
Prime Video is a pretty good destination for viewers looking for documentaries too. Amazon has churned out documentaries such as One Child Nation, Gimme Danger, Generation Wealth and Time in recent years. Other, just-for-fun titles, include The Wild and Wonderful Whites of West Virginia and Hamilton: One Shot to Broadway. Other documentaries that are worth watching on the service include Citizenfour about NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden and All In: The Fight for Democracy about voter suppression.
Live Sports on Prime Video
Overall, Prime Video is an on-demand, rather than live, streaming service. Still, Prime Video does broadcast Thursday Night Football games, for which they hold an exclusive deal. This means that if you are a football fan and you don’t want to miss the Thursday-night action, you’ve got to have a Prime Video subscription.
Additionally, Amazon will be streaming 16 of the regular-season WNBA games as well as the Commissioner’s Cup Championship Game. If you live in New York, your subscription will grant you access to selected games of the Yankees. This shows that Amazon has ambition in the sports arena, though they still are not really competitive with the likes of ESPN+ or FuboTV.
If you want more sports than a Prime Video subscription provides, consider adding channels such as PGA Tour Live, NBA League Pass and MLB TV to your subscription.
How Can You View Your Amazon Prime Video Account?
If you need to review or make changes to your Prime Video account, go to Amazon.com. You may already be signed in, but if you are not, go to the top right-hand corner of the screen to sign in. Enter your email address and password to access your account.
Once you are signed in, you can simply hover over the button that says Account & Lists. This brings up several drop-down menus, which may vary depending upon whether you have a Prime Video only or a full Amazon Prime subscription.
The “Your Account” drop-down menu has many selections. The ones that you may use the most frequently include Account, Memberships & Subscriptions and Prime Membership.
Select Account, and it will take you to a dashboard with options such as Your Orders, Login & Security, Prime, Gift Cards, Your Payments, Your Profiles, Digital Services and Device Support and others. Basically, this selection offers you several shortcuts to commonly used services.
Back at the drop-down menu, you can click on Memberships & Subscriptions to view your Prime membership as well as any add-ons to which you are subscribed. Each entry is packed with information including how much the subscription costs and your selected payment method. From here, you can view your entire payment history for each subscription and change you payment method. You further have the option to cancel a subscription or change the settings of each subscription from this screen.
This screen also gives you the option to view past subscriptions or to apply other filters.
Back at the top drop-down menu, you can click on Prime Membership to see more about your subscription. This screen shows you your current plan and gives you the option to review alternative plans. You’ll see your renewal date and have the opportunity to update your payment method from here. The Manage Membership card is where you can update, cancel or change your subscription.
If you choose to end your membership within the current term, you will receive a full refund as long as you have not used any of your benefits. Keep in mind that any additional subscriptions that are tied to your membership will not be renewed if you decide to cancel Prime Video.
Contacting Customer Support
Once signed in to your Amazon account on the website, select “Customer Service” from the drop-down menu on the Account & Lists button. This takes you to a dashboard where you will see a variety of topics like Memberships, subscriptions or communications and Payment, charges or gift cards. Click on any of the buttons to get quick answers to common questions.
Below this dashboard is a search bar for the help library. Once again, this may help you to quickly find the solution that you need. It also is possible to digitally chat with a customer service rep if you have issues that can’t be resolved with an article.
Is Amazon Prime Video Worth It?
Prime Video is reasonably priced and includes many worthy original productions. It is ahead of the pack when it comes to technological features, which also makes it an attractive option. Plus, Amazon Prime Video can be watched on virtually any device, so it is accessible to everyone. It’s also advantageous to be able to rent or buy programming that is not currently included in a subscription.
Sign up for a free trial of Amazon Prime Video to give the service a try.