June 18, 2019
Amazon-owned IMDb — the popular online database featuring information related to movies, television and video games — is rebranding its recently launched Freedive video service as IMDb TV. Thanks to new deals with MGM, Sony Pictures Entertainment and Warner Bros., the ad-supported VOD service will add thousands of new titles in the upcoming months, essentially tripling the number of TV shows and movies available to U.S. viewers for free. The company also plans to expand its audience with a European launch later this year.
“According to Amazon, IMDb TV runs half the ads of typical network TV broadcasts,” reports Variety. IMDb TV offers content across multiple genres and competes in the AVOD market with services such as “Tubi, The Roku Channel, Crackle, Viacom’s Pluto TV, and Walmart’s Vudu.”
IMDb TV currently features films such as “Drive,” “Donnie Darko,” “Monster,” “Dances With Wolves” and the recently added “Jerry Maguire” and “Captain Fantastic,” in addition to popular TV shows like “Duck Dynasty,” “Fringe,” “The Bachelor” and “Quantum Leap.” It also offers a collection of short-form originals that reflect the type of information featured on the IMDb site.
Starting in July, the service will offer films such as “Sense and Sensibility,” “Draft Day,” “A Knight’s Tale” and — marking a first for an ad-supported streaming service — Oscar-winner “La La Land.”
The service is available via “the IMDb website and as a free channel in Amazon’s Prime Video app across hundreds of devices,” notes Variety, including “Amazon’s own Fire TV streaming-media products, which the tech giant claims has over 34 million active users worldwide.” However, it is not available on the IMDb Android and iOS apps.
“Amazon and Roku are battling for users and to become the top media player in terms of market share,” reports TechCrunch. “Amazon announced its 34 million actives for Fire TV in May, which topped Roku’s 29.1 million active ‘accounts’ reported in Q1.”