Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) is at it again – enhancing Amazon Prime membership with new features from live game-streaming site Twitch, reports The Verge. Twitch, the world’s leading social video platform and gaming community, was acquired by Amazon in 2014 in a $970-million-cash deal. Following a 30-day free trial, Twitch Prime will be available to new or existing Prime members for $99 a year or $10.99 a month. It won’t be available as a standalone service, according to The Verge.
| 5 Ways Subscription Businesses Can Thrive in Uncertain Times
Taking strategic actions is the key to growing recurring revenue during uncertain times. This session reveals the few vital actions subscription business leaders should take immediately to focus their team and themselves on growth over the next few months.
This free webinar is April 15, 2 PM Eastern.
Twitch Prime features include:
- A rotating selection of free digital games and in-game “loot” every month, including characters, vehicles, skins and boosts for games like Hearthstone and Smite, plus surprises like a copy of Streamline the day it launches
- Ad-free viewing plus a free channel subscription every 30 days, including exclusive emotes, more chat colors and the chat badge of royalty (The Verge says channel subscriptions usually cost around $4.99 a month.)
- Member discounts on new release box games, including pre-orders and collector’s editions, pre-order price guarantees and release-day delivery
- Access to Prime Video with thousands of movies and TV shows
- Ad-free access to over a million songs through Prime Music (not part of Amazon’s upcoming streaming music subscriptions)
- Unlimited free two-day shipping on more than 20 million Prime eligible items
Currently, Twitch Prime is available to all Prime members, including Prime student members, in the U.S., Canada, U.K., Germany, France, Italy and Spain. Amazon and Twitch made the joint announcement at TwitchCon 2016.
“Twitch Prime is one of those unique cases where we have an opportunity to build a product that is equally great for all of our customers-streamers, viewers, and game developers,” said Emmett Shear, CEO of Twitch, in a September 30 press release.
“Offering subscriptions free through Prime saves money for viewers, while supporting streamers to build their community. Free games and in-game content are always a hit with gamers, but they also let developers reach millions of new potential players. When Amazon acquired Twitch, the first thing the community asked was, ‘when will Twitch be bundled in with Amazon Prime?’ Twitch Prime answers that question in a way that speaks to our community,” Shear added.
As part of the launch of Twitch Prime, Twitch is partnering with GameChanger Charity, a nonprofit that raises money and creates life-changing experiences for children with terminal diseases. From Friday, September 30 through Wednesday, October 5, Twitch will donate $100,000 for every 100,000 channel subscriptions made by Twitch viewers, to a maximum of $1,000,000.
Founded in June 2011, Twitch attracts 9.7 million daily active users and more than 2 million unique monthly streamers with an average of 106 minutes watched per person per day. To date, the Twitch community has raised more than $46 million for charity. In addition to being able to watch others play games, Twitch enhances the experience with audio and chat so streamers and their audiences can interact in real-time.
Amazon continues to add value to its Prime membership package, and this enhancement is an excellent opportunity for Amazon to leverage its relationship with the gaming community. Twitch Prime exposes gamers who are not already Prime members to the many benefits of Prime, while also giving them exclusive perks.
According to Twitch, the site is “an honest means of discovery proven to influence video game purchase decisions,” so in addition to the potential to grow its Prime member base, Amazon is also creating an opportunity for additional online sales from the Amazon marketplace. This move seems like it is good for the gaming community, and of course, good for Amazon. Investors certainly seem to like it. Amazon stock closed at $836.74 per share at close on October 3, up from $788.87 on September 6.