Home Technology Amazon Prime Video Will Have Even More Ads

Amazon Prime Video Will Have Even More Ads

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Amazon is set to add even more ads to Prime Video in the form of pause ads built entirely to leverage your Prime subscription and sell you stuff. This comes after the online retail monolith just got done forcing ads on Prime Video subscribers unless they paid an extra $3 a month.

We already have start-of-show ads, but soon, you’ll start to see so-called pause ads, carousel ads, and trivia ads. If it isn’t clear by the names, they all pertain to Prime shopping. As explained by The Hollywood Reporter, these pages will let users add items to their cart without having to leave Prime Video. Pause ads, in particular, are going to be ever-present whenever you pause your content with a transparent banner showing you products you can add to your cart. Hulu introduced pause ads back in 2019. Now, YouTube is doing the same with its service.

Pause ads will be constant, but at least you can ignore them more easily than you will the carousel and trivia ads. Shoppable carousel ads will appear during Prime’s regular commercial breaks. Users can use their mouse or remote to click through these products if they choose. Trivia ads will also appear during breaks, and they’ll prompt users to answer a few questions, offer an explainer on a product, and share an option to add to cart.

The announcement didn’t clearly explain when Prime subscribers will start seeing these ads. Gizmodo reached out to Amazon for comment, and we will update the story once we hear back.

If it wasn’t clear, the end goal is to finally integrate Amazon’s digital retail empire with its streaming service. Other services have tried offering QR codes that let you jump to a page on your phone, but now folks watching ads on Prime won’t just have to deal with the subtle manipulation of sponsorships or advertisements but the direct call to action to buy, buy, buy. The announced ad offerings come just a few days before Amazon’s big Upfront conference on May 14, where it will try to sell advertisers all the benefits of shilling their products and services on Amazon.

Now, the real question is whether Amazon will use its first-party data to offer targeted ads on Prime Video. All signs point to yes. In the company’s announcement, Amazon Ad’s VP of Global Ad Sales, Alan Moss, said the goal is to “transform streaming advertising through our differentiated combination of reach, first-party signals, and ad tech.” That mention of first-party signals is Amazon’s particular brand of predictive targeted advertising that doesn’t rely on third-party cookies.

In January, Amazon forced ads on Prime Video subscribers for anybody already paying $15 for the video service alone each month or $139 a year for Prime. You’d need to select a separate, $3 a month addition to not see any ads. It’s been a few months with ads, and it’s pretty clear at this point the ads have undoubtedly made the service worse. There aren’t nearly as many ads on Prime Video as on streaming services like Hulu or even Netflix, but they do still interrupt the viewing experience.

In a way, Amazon isn’t really so different from any other streaming platform. Streaming prices have shot up across the board, and the last time Amazon raised prices on its Prime subscription was back in 2022. Still, the way the retail giant implemented its ad offering feels worse than how Netflix introduced its cheaper streaming tier last year, even though it will soon eliminate the Netflix Basic subscription tier. Amazon is facing a potential class-action lawsuit saying the company “deceived” users on its once-ad-less streaming service.



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