Amazon Prime Video users will see ads on shows and movies from early next year unless they subscribe to an ad-free tier that would cost more, the tech giant said on Friday.
The company said the advertisements will be introduced in the United States, the U.K., Germany and Canada in early 2024, followed by France, Italy, Spain, Mexico and Australia later in the year.
“To continue investing in compelling content and keep increasing that investment over a long period of time, starting in early 2024, Prime Video shows and movies will include limited advertisements,” the company said in a statement. “We aim to have meaningfully fewer ads than linear TV and other streaming TV providers.”
The streaming industry has been facing a slowdown in new sign-ups as subscribers struggling with high inflation and interest rates dial back entertainment spending and other discretionary expenses.
Amazon will roll out an ad-free subscription tier for an additional $2.99 per month for U.S. Prime members. The company added it would share pricing for other countries at a later date.
Prime subscription in the U.S. currently costs $14.99 per month or $139 per year, and $9.99 per month and $99.99 per year for Canadians.
Amazon said live event content such as sports will continue to include advertising even if the subscriber has paid for the ad-free plan. Its signature sports offering in the U.S. — NFL football on Thursday nights — is broadcast in Canada instead through Bell Media properties, and via streaming service DAZN, both of which include ads during games.