Amazon has today announced a new platform that lets creatives and video-makers upload their own videos to rent or sell through Amazon Video.
With Amazon Video Direct (AVD), the Internet giant is looking to increase the amount of content available through its online video-streaming service. In order to accomplish this, Amazon is adopting an approach similar to that of YouTube or Vimeo, which both offer ways for users to upload and manage their own videos. Just last week, Vimeo acquired VHX to help creators build their own subscription video service, while it launched its own paid on-demand service in 2013 to let anyone sell TV shows and movies directly to viewers.
YouTube has also been diversifying its services, having recently launched a monthly subscription that removes ads and offers original content.
Open to viewers in the U.S., U.K., Germany, Austria, and Japan, the AVD program allows creators to make their videos available to own or rent. They can be ad-supported for free access to everyone, or made available as part of the $99 Amazon Prime annual membership, where they can earn royalties based on the number of minutes streamed.
Back in December, Amazon launched a new Streaming Partners Program that allowed Prime members to add additional video-on-demand (VoD) subscriptions to their annual membership. And AVD titles will be available as an add-on subscription through this program, too. Launch partners for AVD include some big names, such as Conde Nast, HowStuffWorks, The Guardian, Mashable, Mattel, and more.
“It’s an amazing time to be a content creator,” said Jim Freeman, vice president of Amazon Video, in a press release. “There are more options for distribution than ever before and with Amazon Video Direct, for the first time, there’s a self-service option for video providers to get their content into a premium streaming subscription service.”
For Amazon, this new service offers a quick way of boosting its available content, while simultaneously encouraging engagement with existing brands and their legions of online followers. As part of the service, creators can also access analytics that show the number of minutes a title has been viewed, revenue generated, subscribers, and more.