Amazon acquires Premier League rights: expert analyst comment

June 7, 2018

The Premier League has today confirmed that Amazon Prime Video has acquired the rights to one of the UK broadcast rights packages for three years from the 2019/20 season. Amazon will stream 20 games live each season, in two blocks – 10 during a bank holiday and 10 during a mid-week set of fixtures.

David Mercer, Principal Analyst at Strategy Analytics comments:

“This is strategically significant as Amazon is the first player to break the Sky/BT stranglehold since 2013, and it will be the first to broadcast games only through an internet streaming service. While Amazon will be showing only 10% of live games each season this time round, it sounds a warning that Sky and BT cannot afford to be complacent during the next rights battle in 2021.

“Amazon already has extensive technical experience of streaming live Premier League games through its partnership with Sky’s Now TV platform, so we don’t expect to see major technical issues when it starts using Prime Video for live broadcasts. Amazon does have work to do, however, when it comes to delivering the sort of high quality TV sports production which Sky and BT are known for.

“From a consumer perspective this could be seen as creating more complexity and added costs, especially for football fans who don’t want to miss any games. There will be some fans who will pay for a monthly subscription to Amazon Prime just to watch a few extra games, and we may well also see an uptick in free trial subscriptions prior to each of Amazon’s Premier League fixture blocks.”

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