Amazon Has Invented TV Channels

By Ian Morris on at

Having persuaded us all to call up Sky and cancel our contracts by blowing a raspberry, Amazon has now decided that this "TV channel thing" might have legs. So today it's introducing Amazon Channels in the UK, and bringing TV channels to our dilapidated shores.

So what's the deal here? Well, it's the kind of a la carte approach that most broadcasters across the world refuse to take. You simply pick the channels you want to watch, pay for them individually, and ignore the stuff that doesn't interest you. It's not a bad idea from that perspective.

This approach doesn't work for broadcasters like Sky because it trades on having a broad range of channels for everyone. Sky, of course, makes money from encrypting and hosting channels on its platform, and those channels are happy to pay for that service because they are included in a bouquet of channels that should help them reach a wider audience.

Adding a new channel costs extra, on top of your mandatory Amazon Prime sub. Prices start at £1.49 for Panna, which shows you recipes from "master chefs" and other food related yummery. One of the more expensive is the rather brilliantly named "Sweatflix", which costs £9.49 and promises workout and yoga instructions. It's worth it for that name though, so clever.

There's also the chance to pay for ITV! Yes, that's right Coronation Street fans, you can now pay to watch Corrie without ads for £3.99 per month. This is clearly ill-thought-out on ITVs part though, as the advert breaks are essential for making tea and such.

And if you went mad and ordered all the channels? That'll be about £200 per month you'd be coughing up for. That's a price that makes have all the Sky channels seem like an absolute bargain, even if you chuck in a couple of pay-per-view fights.

Still, Amazon isn't pretending this is about building another Sky multichannel service. This is about getting you access to things that you really want to see. You can explore the list of channels on Amazon's site and sign up for 30-day trials for some of them. Sweatflix trial it is then...