Streaming service Twitch has announced the largest evidence yet of owner Amazon's integration plans: Twitch Prime, a new premium membership tier available at no additional cost to Amazon Prime members.
Originally launched as a means of getting free next-day delivery, Amazon has been spending its last few years piling additional value onto its £79-a-year service. Prime Video provides a subset of the company's on-demand catalogue free of charge to Prime members, Prime Now offers same-day delivery in selected areas, Prime Early Access gives members a half-hour head-start on lightning deals, game pre-orders come with a £2 discount, Prime Music and Prime Photos provide storage and streaming, and Amazon Pantry even allows members to do their grocery shopping via the site.
Now, there's a new entry in the Amazon Prime feature list: Twitch Prime. '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,
' burbled Twitch chief executive Emmett Shear at the unveiling. '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.
Those choosing to link their Amazon Prime accounts with Twitch will receive free in-game content each month - characters, vehicles, skins, and stat boosters starting with 'loot' for Hearthstone and Smite, plus the promise of a free copy of Streaminline on launch date - and the the promise of an ad-free viewing experience. Subscribers also get the ability to support streamers with one free channel subscription every 30 days, plus exclusive emotes and a crown chat badge.
Twitch Prime effectively replaces the existing Twitch Turbo subscription tier: while Twitch Turbo will still be available to existing subscribers without Amazon Prime accounts and in regions where Amazon Prime isn't available, no new Twitch Turbo subscriptions may be purchased. More information is available from the official website