As noted by the L.A. Times earlier this week, Amazon signed a new licensing agreement with MGM Studios that adds a large quantity of classic movies as well as a handful of television series to the Prime Instant Video streaming service. Assuming that an Amazon customer is subscribed to the $79 Amazon Prime shipping service, they can now watch such films as Midnight Cowboy, The Silence of the Lambs, Hannibal, All Dogs Go To Heaven, Dances with Wolves, Species, Rain Man and The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. Television shows that have been added to the streaming video service include Dead Like Me, Stargate SG-1, Stargate Universe, Stargate Atlantis and Thirtysomething.
Prior to the MGM announcement, Amazon also signed a new deal with Paramount last month that brought hundreds of more recent movies into the Prime Instant Video catalog. Amazon Prime subscribers can watch movies like Mission: Impossible 3, Shooter, Braveheart, The Sum of All Fears, Forrest Gump, Stardust, Mean Girls, The Truman Show, The Italian Job, Nacho Libre, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Star Trek and Galaxy Quest.
While Amazon hasn’t released an updated figure on the amount of Prime streaming titles available on the site, the total number is well beyond 17,000 at this point. The total number of streaming titles went up considerably after Amazon added Discovery and Viacom content earlier this year.
In addition to more movies and television shows, Amazon has finally added a queue function for Prime Instant Video users. Called the Watchlist, Amazon customers can add premium movies or television shows to a personal list in order to mark this content for a later time. For instance, someone in the workplace could add the recently released Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows to their Watchlist to view when they returned home. The Watchlist categorizes content between movies, television shows and Prime Instant Video. Video can be added to the Watchlist be clicking the “Add to Watchlist” button on the main Amazon Instant Video page for each movie and television show.
In addition to adding an Amazon Instant Video application to the PlayStation 3 during early April 2012, Amazon added the application to Microsoft’s Xbox 360 during the end of May 2012. Fairly identical in design to the application on the PlayStation 3, Amazon Prime subscribers can play video content and Kinect owners can utilize voice as well as motion controls.
Oddly enough, any premium purchases of new feature films or shows have to be placed on the Amazon.com site rather than through the application. Once a video has been purchased or rented through the site, the content will appear within the “Video Library” of the Amazon Instant Video application.
While Amazon Instant Video never made an appearance on the Wii, Nintendo did confirm that Wii U owners will be able to access the service later this year at the launch of the console. Beyond gaming devices, Amazon is lagging on developing Instant Video applications for iOS and Android devices. Regarding mobile smartphones and tablets, only Amazon’s Kindle Fire is able to access the Prime Instant Video catalog at this time.