NYC TV Week: Amazon Channels Offers Consumers More Content Choices

Amazon is hoping its "Channels" service will provide more value and choice to cord-cutting consumers looking to access traditional cable services, Amazon Channels head Richard Au said Wednesday (Oct. 18) at NYC Television Week.

Read More: Complete Coverage of NYC Television Week

The service, launched in 2015 to Amazon Prime subscribers, offers access to more than 130 premium channels from cable networks such as Showtime, Starz and PBS Kids as well as to streaming services like Acorn TV and AMC’s horror-themed service Shutter.

Au, who spoke at a Next TV Summit morning panel moderated by B&C/Multichannel News editorial director Mark Robichaux, said Amazon Channels was created to provide increase content selections to consumers beyond Amazon’s original programming and on-demand content available through Amazon Prime.

Read More: Complete Coverage of the Next TV Summit

“It’s a great time to be a fan of video because there’s so much great content, but one of the challenges as a consumer is how to find the things that you like,” Au said. “We want to offer all of that content in a very integrated, easy way.”

Along with serving Amazon Prime subscribers, Au said that the Amazon Channels service also provides opportunities for participating cable networks to reach cord-cutting and cord-never consumers.

“We talk to our channel partners like HBO, Showtime and Starz to help them find incremental customers who may not have a cable subscription who have dropped one,” Au said. "We want to continue to make it really easy for our customers to discover new content, whether its Amazon original content or third-party content.”

R. Thomas Umstead

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.