Lovefilm, one of Netflix's longest running competitors – though not on the same level – is set to disappear soon, as Amazon is going to rebrand the service to Amazon Instant Video and bundle it into the Amazon Prime Service, offering media and free shipping all in the same breath.
Amazon has had a real on again, off again relationship with Lovefilm, since it essentially created the company we know today several years ago, when it sold its DVD rental business. However, when Lovefilm turned it into a success story, it bought it back and now it's dropping the name that helped make it what it is today.
Still the DVD rental part is almost non-existant at this point, streaming is quite clearly the future, as are subscription charges according to Amazon. Its plans are to offer Amazon Prime at £79 for the year (current price £49) giving customers free delivery on all Amazon orders, as well as access to all of Lovefilm's current content, including some 15,000 TV shows and movies and the half million strong Kindle Lending Library.
Just like Netflix, Amazon is also looking to produce its own programming to help promote the Lovefilm service. Its two new projects are Alpha House and Betas, both of which will hit the service this year.
Kitguru Says: It seems a shame to see Lovefilm die off, but it makes sense from Amazon's position. If you already had Prime as well, then it's a pretty decent offer, considering normally Lovefilm instant costs £6 a month. With Amazon's new system, it's essentially under £2 per month.[Thanks Wired]