In a nutshell: The addition of live programming would provide Amazon with a viable way to differentiate itself from other on-demand offerings like Disney+ and Netflix, both of which specialize in the delivery of pre-recorded content. And it might not look like other over-the-top streaming services, either.
An unnamed industry insider recently told Protocol that the e-commerce giant has been actively pursuing licensing deals with broadcasters for live and linear programming. The source said we should assume that Amazon is talking with everybody.
Protocol notes that Amazon could bundle its existing Prime Video catalog with a smaller selection of must-see live and linear programming, likely in a bid to avoid the high content costs that drove Sony to discontinue its PlayStation Vue TV service earlier this year.
Amazon already has plenty of experience streaming live broadcasts through Prime Video, having partnered with the NFL to distribute Thursday Night Football games during the regular season through 2022.
Ultimately, Amazon’s success or failure in this space could come down to pricing and programming offered. True a la carte pricing (paying only for the individual channels you want) would be an obvious home run but thus far, nobody has been able to get industry executives to agree to that – not Apple, and likely not Amazon, either.