Amazon is putting more movies and games behind its Prime membership paywall, as the e-commerce company continues to push its membership service on customers.
Amazon’s fast growing subscription service, Prime, has emerged as a key pillar of Amazon’s e-commerce and streaming business. For $99 per year, Prime members can access streamed movies, TV shows, and Amazon’s original productions in addition to free two-day shipping and one-hour delivery on certain orders. Amazon also recently debuted a monthly option for Prime, as well as a way to just pay for streaming movies, shows, and more.
With the most recent change, the Blu-ray edition of the movie Birdman, and a number of PlayStation 4 games, including Grand Theft Auto V, GTA 5, Far Cry Primal, Assassin’s Creed Syndicate, Battlefield Hardline and Rainbow Six Siege, are only available from Amazon for Prime members.
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Non-Prime members can still buy these items from third party sellers on the marketplace, but not from Amazon. The decision affects customers in the U.S. and U.K.
Making more items exclusive to Prime members could another way Amazon is hoping to boost Prime membership. More Prime members equals more sales for Amazon, according to some reports. Prime customers spend as much as double on purchases on Amazon to what non-Prime customers spend in a year. A recent Consumer Intelligence Research Partners report cited Prime has 54 million subscribers in the United States, up 35% from 2014. Furthermore, approximately 38% of American households are members, says research from investment bank Cowen.