Amazon Prime is now asking users to pay extra for high quality audio and video content

Major streaming platforms such as Netflix, Disney and Amazon Prime are currently aiming to increase their revenue and subscriber base. To achieve this, they are introducing several changes to their streaming services, such as limiting password sharing and charging more for ad-free viewing. In addition to that, Amazon Prime has recently removed the Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos surround sound features from its standard service and is now asking users to pay extra to access the high-quality audio and video streaming.

Amazon has confirmed that it has not only added ads to its paid subscription but also removed the high-quality audio and video option. Users can now pay $2.99 a month more on top of their Amazon Prime subscription to get back the quality and remove ads. Amazon spokesperson Katie Barker told The Verge that the company has deliberately removed the “Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos capabilities” from the ad-supported option, and they are “only available on the ad-free option, on relevant titles.”

The changes were first reported by 4KFilme, who discovered that their smart TVs from Sony, LG, and Samsung were now showing content in HDR10 with Dolby Digital 5.1, instead of the higher-fidelity options that were previously included in the Amazon Prime subscription.

Notably, the price hike across streaming services will impact Indian users soon or the later. As for now In India, users can purchase Prime membership at an offer price by paying Rs 1499 per year, Rs 299 per month, Rs 599 for 3 months (basis eligibility) , or purchase Prime Lite plan by paying Rs 799 per year (basis eligibility).

For Netflix users can get their  Mobile plan for Rs 149 per month, Basic plan for Rs 199 per month, Standard for Rs 499 per month and Premium Rs 649 per month.  The Standard Netflix plan allows users to stream on up to two devices at once in Full HD 1080p quality. The Premium plan allows users to watch content on up to four devices simultaneously. 

However, the prices of both Netflix and Amazon may not be the same in the future. Compared to India, the price structure is a bit different in other countries. For example, the Amazon Prime Lite subscription is only available in the Indian region. Similarly, the Netflix mobile plans were dedicated to the Indian audience. However, in other countries, the users only have the Basic plan, which is reportedly being removed so that users can pay more to get the streaming benefits.So it is possible that the platform will change their pricing in India or take another approach. 

Meanwhile, Disney is also bringing in changes following its competitors. In August 2023, Disney CEO Bob Iger announced that Disney+ will begin to limit password sharing in 2024. The new policy is expected to start in March 2024. Disney’s chief financial officer, Hugh Johnston, has said that the platform will redirect users who “share passwords improperly” or sign up using someone else’s login credentials to purchase a Disney+ subscription. The new policy may include analysing the use of an account to determine compliance.

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