updated 08:30 am EDT, Mon October 31, 2011
ABC and Disney stay online with Amazon, Netflix
Disney and its ABC division on Monday recommitted themselves to Internet video Monday with separate deals for Amazon Instant Video and Netflix. Both deals give it access to all prior seasons of both active and recently ended shows as well as back catalog access. Amazon's deal gives it both access to on-demand Instant Video as well as unlimited access for Prime subscribers.
Neither deal includes exclusives.
The pacts don't address a common desire for current TV shows, which will still mostly be found at Hulu and iTunes, but comes at a time when TV production companies have been questioning whether they want to give as much access as they have in the past. Starz pulled out of Netflix despite being one of Netflix's earlier key deals, allegedly because it wanted to force tiered pricing similar to traditional cable.
Amazon's agreement comes just two weeks before the Kindle Fire ships and is key to filling out the Android tablet's role as a video player. Every buyer gets a month of trial access to Amazon Prime as an incentive to try its video service, and more content is both likely to drive the $79 subscriptions as well as keep customers using the Kindle Fire.
More than 13,000 videos should be on Prime by the start of 2012.