Amazon Instant Video now boasts 100,000 titles to rent. But that makes it more of a threat to iTunes than Netflix, surely? At this point in time, yes, but longterm either Amazon or Apple could prove to be competition.
Amazon Instant Video Library
Amazon has recently penned deals with CBS and NBC which has helped push its digital video content beyond the 100,000 titles milestone for the first time. Unfortunately most of these titles are limited to Amazon Instant Video rather than Amazon Prime.
TechCrunch suggested this meant Netflix needed to Watch Out!, but at the moment Netflix is perfectly fine, thank you very much. The future may well see this situation change, however, which is likely why Netflix is expanding internationally and shoring up its U.S. business before Amazon has a chance to “flip the switch.”
Comparing Apples and Oranges
Some people seem to have got it into their heads, directly on the back of this announcement, that Amazon Instant Video is now beginning to rival Netflix, and that the latter should be looking over its shoulder for the competition about the stick a knife in between its shoulder blades. But this is nonsense.
Amazon Instant Video is an à la carte service whereby customers purchase individual titles for streaming. Which is more in line with what Apple offers on iTunes. Netflix, on the other hand, offers an all-you-can-eat service called Watch Instantly for a set monthly subscription. So we’re comparing apples and oranges here.
Amazon does have a similar service, Amazon Prime, which costs $79-a-year and includes other benefits. But there are only around 9,000 titles included in the Amazon Prime video library, which compares unfavorably to the tens of thousands Netflix offers.
Amazon can rightly be proud of the range of video content it now offers its customers. Amazon Instant Video is good competition to the behemoth that is Apple iTunes. But it’s no Netflix, and isn’t even trying to be.
However, were Amazon or Apple to decide they did want to beat Netflix by offering a cheaper all-you-can-eat service then they may be able to do so. After all, they now have the content in place and the lines of communication with those who own the content open.
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