Twitch Prime members will lose ad-free viewing next month

Photo by Amelia Krales / The Verge

Twitch Prime, the streaming video site’s Amazon-style benefits program, will no longer include ad-free viewing as a complimentary perk starting on September 14th, the company announced today. Initially launched two years ago as a suite of benefits for Amazon Prime subscribers, Twitch Prime has grown into a more robust platform that offers free games, in-game loot for select titles, and a monthly channel subscription credit that can be awarded to a streamer of the member’s choice.

All those perks are remaining part of Twitch Prime, and the only aspect of the service that is changing going forward is the ad-free viewing. Twitch describes the decision as a way to help better support streamers. “Advertising is an important source of support for the creators who make Twitch possible. This change will strengthen and expand that advertising opportunity for creators so they can get more support from their viewers for doing what they love,” reads the company’s blog post.

Also important to note is that Twitch essentially foot the bill for the complimentary $4.99 monthly subscription as part of Twitch Prime, and it also let millions of users forgo advertising that it would otherwise get a cut of. So Twitch itself is also financially benefiting from removing this perk, although the free monthly subscription as part of Prime is remaining.

Users with Twitch Prime activated, which basically means anyone who’s linked their Amazon Prime account to their Twitch account, will still get to enjoy ad-free viewing until October 15th. The September cutoff will be for new Twitch Prime subscriptions. After that, the only way to get ad-free viewing will be to subscribe to Twitch Turbo, which is a separate tier of service that costs $8.99.

Twitch still does not offer Twitch Prime as a standalone service, likely because Amazon wants Prime to continue looking like a good deal even as it raises the monthly and annual cost. Amazon bumped monthly Prime membership fees by 18 percent back in January to $12.99 a month. In April, Amazon increased the cost of its annual Prime plan from $99 to $119; CEO Jeff Bezos announced that same month that Prime now has 100 million paying subscribers. Twitch Prime is just one of the many benefits of paying for Prime, in addition to two-day shipping, access to Prime Video, and — after Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods — in-store grocery discounts as well.

Comments

PepeHands

Wow, and here I thought that Microsoft’s streaming service had no chance of being successful. Amazon just couldn’t let me be right.

yeah, and just as youtube is also improving things for streamers… not sure that’s a good move by twitch. They’re dominant as hell but gamers are not known to be hesitant when it comes to switching services….

How did YouTube improve?

Twitch describes the decision as a way to help better support streamers. "Advertising is an important source of support for the creators who make Twitch possible.

Grade-A horseshit. Nothing has ever stopped streamers showing ads on their stream/overlay.

if you had prime, you didn’t see those ads

Talking about the Stream itself, before getting to Twitch. It’s not that hard to loop an ad into your overlay, or broadcast it during a break.

I’d be curious what the payout from an external service is to the built in service.

Nothing to Twitch. I totally understand them wanting to make money, I just get pissed when they spin it as being just for Streamers. Cut the crap Amazon, and just say you need to make money off the viewers.

You’re assuming the streamer has an external partnership. Not all Twitch partners bring in that kind of an audience.

Most of the smaller streamers under 300 subs or so rely on double dipping to make even minimum wage from streaming. I mean I guess nobody is entitled to making a living from this, but still.

If they cannot make a living off streaming it should be more a second source of income or a hobby than a job. Not everyone starts out and is Ninja.

This paragraph is misleading.

Users with Twitch Prime activated, which basically means anyone who’s linked their Amazon Prime account to their Twitch account, will still get to enjoy ad-free viewing until October 15th. The September cutoff will be for new Twitch Prime subscriptions.

From the email:

Members with monthly subscriptions will continue to get ad-free viewing until October 15. If you already have an annual subscription, or if you upgrade to an annual subscription before September 14, you will continue with ad-free viewing until your next renewal date.

This move frustrates me. While I understand stating that the purpose is to help creators make money, Nick has pointed out the underlying corporate reasoning: more ad revenue for Twitch. I get it, but it bums me out each time another service makes this move. I’m sure I’ll be over this after a month or two of having ads back on, but it’s still a bummer.

"While I understand stating that the purpose is to help creators make money"

No it’s not, this is Amazon improving the bottom line. Nothing else.

While it stinks, I completely get it. There are so many benefits to the prime package overall that this can help make more without another price hike. Easiest thing to remove without pissing off Amazon Prime users. People pay for Amazon Prime with Twitch Prime as a great perk to the service. If you watch Twitch, I doubt this would make you leave as you dealt with the ads before.

For me they can remove prime video/music it’s a shite service.

Twitch and delivery was the best part.

Use the uBlock origin extension on desktop browsers. It has a method to block all twitch ads.

It’s not about supporting streamers. Most twitch streamers make money off twitch prime subs that comes out of Amazon’s pocket and donations which to my knowledge streamers get 100% of so twitch doesn’t really have a revenue stream outside of ad revenue.

Twitch gets a cut of every donation.There is contracts they negotiate so its not the same for every streamer.

While I constantly forget I even have twitch prime, it really sucks that these streaming services are now trying to bring ads to them… Most of us probably started using things like Netflix and prime video because they were ad free experiences, I don’t know when Amazon started doing it but I’ve seen a few ads for other prime originals and Netflix just started doing it this week.

This will just encourage more ad-blockers.

I have Prime but Adblock is always enabled on Twitch, and clearly for good reason.

I got the email and was like "Wow I guess Twitch does want a competitive market."

To be honest when amazon bought twitch i wondered how long it would be until the typical amazon greed took over and it took 2 years but it’s finally happened. yeah it might benefit twitch partners a bit but it benefits amazon/twitch MORE so i say adios twitch and hello mixer (i have been a mixer member since it was beam and have watched it evolve) btw twitch makes the most money out of subs/bits.

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