Amazon brings 3K more movies to Prime Instant Video with Epix

Michelle Clancy | 10-10-2012

Amazon has signed up the Epix movie channel as a content partner for the Prime Instant Video service, bringing titles like the Avengers, Iron Man 2 and The Hunger Games to its portfolio. The three-year deal adds 3,000 movies to the library, bringing Amazon's total to 25,000—about half of what Netflix boasts.

But speaking of Netflix, the No. 1 online streamer lost its exclusive deal with Epix as of the end of September. It had been paying $200 million per year for the rights. Now, it will have a non-exclusive arrangement with Epix through September 2013, with an option to continue through 2014.

Epix, a pay TV movie channel launched in 2009, brings together more than 15,000 movies from Paramount Pictures, MGM and Lionsgate.

Amazon did not disclose the terms of the three-year deal, but the company is "investing hundreds of millions of dollars to expand the Prime Instant Video library," according to Bill Carr, vice president of video and music at Amazon. Also, Amazon is expected to unveil a new version of its Kindle Fire tablet this week.

Amazon Prime runs $79/year and includes free two-day shipping on millions of items with no minimum order size, unlimited instant streaming with Prime Instant Videos, and a Kindle book to borrow for free each month. For students, the service is free for six months and $39/year thereafter, for up to four years.