Amazon.com Inc. is developing a standalone app that will enable users to watch sports content from its growing streaming catalog, The Information reported today.
The sports content offered by the company is currently available through its Amazon Prime Video service. It’s unclear when the new standalone app will roll out. Additionally, The Information cited a source as saying that Amazon may decide not to release the app.
Amazon has significantly increased its investment in sports content over the past few years. Last May, the company inked an 11-year deal with the National Football League to make Thursday Night Football games available exclusively on Amazon Prime Video. The deal is reportedly worth $1 billion annually.
Amazon broadcasted its first exclusive Thursday Night Football game in September. The game averaged 15.3 million viewers, well above the 12.5 million viewers that the company had reportedly expected.
Amazon has also invested in other types of sports content as part of its streaming strategy. In April, the company bought the rights to make 21 New York Yankees games available exclusively on Prime Video. Earlier, Amazon licensed the U.K. streaming rights to 20 Premier League soccer matches.
Amazon’s recent investments in sports content are part of a broader effort to make Prime Video more competitive with rival streaming services. As part of the same effort, the company acquired storied film studio MGM Holdings Inc. in a $8.45 million deal that closed earlier this year. The deal bought Amazon the rights to more than 4,000 films and 17,000 TV shows created over the course of nearly a century.
Amazon’s total spending on video content and music reached $13 billion in 2021 after growing 18% year-over-year. In 2020, the company’s video and music spending increased by 40%. Amazon Chief Executive Officer Andy Jassy told investors in a shareholder letter published earlier this year that “while there is so much progress in Prime Video from where we started, we have more invention in front of us in the next 15 years than the last 15.”
Amazon’s investments are already paying dividends. The company’s subscription services revenue segment grew 9%, to $8.9 billion, last quarter. The segment includes revenue from video and audio content, as well as Prime memberships and Amazon’s other subscription services for consumers.
Amazon rival Google LLC is also making significant investments in sports content to enhance its streaming services. Last week, the company inked a deal to bring the NFL’s Sunday Ticket game streaming package to its YouTube TV and YouTube Primetime Channels services. The agreement is reportedly worth about $2 billion annually and will run for seven years.
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