Finally, Amazon Prime Video is catching up with competitors like Netflix, Hulu, and Disney+ with one key feature: user profiles. The feature is rolling out today in the mobile and set-top box versions of the Prime Video app.
This feature allows multiple people who share an Amazon Prime subscription to maintain separate watch histories and watchlists. In addition, Amazon has made a distinction between user profiles for children and profiles for adults, with different rules. Users can configure up to six profiles in any combination of child and adult profiles. All of this will be rolled out starting today, but won’t reach all users right away.
According to TechCrunch, multiple user profiles were previously supported in India and Africa, and are only now making their way to the rest of the world, including the United States. The rollout brings Amazon closer to feature parity with Netflix and other major streaming players. Most of the major apps in this space offered this feature, but there are a few outliers, such as CBS All Access.
Some of those other streaming services offer robust parental controls, so Amazon is leaning towards that with these changes as well. Individual profiles can be marked as child profile. That profile only sees recommendations or search results from TV shows and movies that are age-appropriate (12 years and under), and kids can’t make purchases. Amazon is adding a number of other options to filter such content, including the ability to limit content by device.
Amazon is making these changes amid increasing competition. Disney+ has seen tremendous growth in recent months and Netflix seems to be doing well too. Major entrants to the market with huge libraries of exclusive content, such as HBO Max and Peacock, are also entering the market, putting pressure on Prime Video to offer competitive features and content.
In terms of content, Amazon is working on a Lord of the Rings TV series, and a new season has just been released Hanna† The industry giant is also developing a TV series based on the video game franchise Fallout from some of the writers behind HBO’s west world†