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Prime Video will soon introduce pause ads and other ad formats

09 May 2024 | Rasmus Larsen |

A few months after cramming ads into Prime Video, Amazon is already taking the next steps. Viewers will soon encounter pause ads, carousel ads, and brand trivia ads.

In February 2024, Prime Video introduced ads to its basic plan in the US, Canada, UK and Germany. Viewers must pay an additional $3, €3 or £3 per month to remove ads. Additionally, Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos have been moved to the premium plan.

This approach contrasts with how Disney+, Max, Netflix and others have implemented ads. While Prime Video has imposed ads on everyone unwilling to pay extra, other streaming services have taken a more measured approach by introducing a separate, cheaper subscription plan.

Pressing pause = ads

Prime Video has this week announced the upcoming rollout of pause ads, carousel ads, and brand trivia ads. Pause ads will appear when viewers "decide to pause the show or movie they’re streaming". It is "a translucent ad featuring brand messaging and imagery, along with an 'Add to Cart' and 'Learn More'". In other words, ads for products that can be purchased on Amazon. Pausing a show on Prime Video today will, on most devices, bring up the IMDb-powered X-Ray feature, providing you with additional information about the show, its actors, and more. It is unclear what will happen to the X-Ray feature after the introduction of pause ads.

Prime Video X-Ray

Bye bye X-Ray?

Carousel ads will "present a sliding lineup of their products that customers can explore on Amazon and add to their cart using most living-room remotes". Interactive brand trivia ads "help advertisers elevate their storytelling by entertaining customers with factoids about their brand while giving them the opportunity to shop on Amazon, learn more about services and products, and even unlock rewards".

Transforming streaming ads

Amazon was late to the ads game, but is now positioning itself to advertisers as a pioneer in transforming streaming advertising, prioritizing advertisers' needs over the user experience of a paid streaming product. - "Amazon Ads continues to reimagine the streaming TV experience with interactive ad formats that are seamlessly shoppable and help advertisers meaningfully connect with customers," said Alan Moss, VP of global ad sales for Amazon Ads. "We are developing innovative experiences to help brands better engage with customers, as we work to transform streaming advertising through our differentiated combination of reach, first-party signals, and ad tech. Ads in Prime Video provide an unparalleled experience for advertisers to deliver on any full-funnel marketing objective—whether it’s awareness, consideration, or conversion." YouTube is also experimenting with pause ads on TV devices. Enjoy the movie.

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