Amazon has thrown its hat into the race to win the television rights for the English Premier League. The retail and video streaming giant hopes to land the most watched football league in the world after the 2019-2020 season, when the Premier League’s current £8.3 billion contract expires.
Amazon is interested in landing the next television deal with the Premier League, which would change fans’ viewing entirely. It is believed fans would need to sign up to Amazon’s Prime program, and would then be able to stream games. Amazon Prime Video is as little as £5.99 a month, although for an extra £2 per month, Prime members can get free one-day shipping on many of the company’s items along with Prime’s music streaming service. The Seattle-based company will most likely offer a specific Premier League package at an addition cost. In the end, it could be far cheaper to use than subscribing to Sky Sports.
Amazon has already agreed a contract to stream the ATP’s tennis tournaments, and the company could add the Premier League to a growing list of sports. With the way in which fans view television shows now changing, Amazon could provide fans with a new way to watch their favourite football teams. Sky Sports recently signed a new contract with the Championship which lets the television channel stream live midweek fixtures as the television landscape continues to change.
The price for the Premier League will skyrocket once more. Currently, Sky pay £11m per Premier League match, and that number will increase when a new contract is struck.
The news of Amazon’s possible takeover of the Premier League’s rights should excite fans in the United Kingdom. There is a possibility that viewers could pay far less to watch the games via Amazon Prime than with the traditional Sky or BT Sport subscription packages.
Amazon not only won the rights for the ATP tennis tour, bidding in the region of £10m, but the media giant also struck a deal to stream 10 Thursday night NFL games in the United States. Winning the right to show NFL games was a real coup for the company, and shows Amazon’s seriousness in being a major player in live sports. Although Prime will show live tennis tournaments throughout the year, the circuit’s four major events will still be shown on television as well.
For over a decade, Sky has continued to offer Premier League matches for viewing customers without truly upgrading its service to the paying fan. Perhaps the threat of losing the Premier League all together to Amazon could spur change from the media giant. This year did see Sky offer specific sports channels for the first time.