Starting April 27 in the US, the overlooked IMDb TV is rebranding itself as Amazon Freevee in a bid to emphasize that it has free content.
Along with the bizarre name change, Amazon will be creating a massive amount of original content for Freevee as it promises to grow its library by 70% this year. Freevee is already available in the UK and there are also plans to launch the service in Germany later this year.
New wave of original shows
Amazon Studios head Jennifer Slake said they were capitalizing on what IMDb TV had started creating “…widely engaging originals…to make Amazon Freevee the premier AVOD service… “
AVOD stands for video on demand with ad support, but Amazon says the ads won’t be too intrusive. The service will retain IMDb TV’s limited advertising load and remain similar to the UK broadcast standard.
Amazon didn’t provide the full list of original content that will flow to Freevee, but did mention several highlights.
There will be a spinoff of Amazon Prime Video’s original Bosch, titled Bosch: Legacy premiering May 6, and High School, a series based on the memoirs of musical duo Tegan and Sara. An interior design show, Hollywood Houselift with Jeff Lewis, and Greg Garcia’s comedy Sprung will also arrive later.
Building on momentum
Freevee is expected to take the place of IMDb TV in the Amazon Prime Video app. In the coming weeks, the service will have its own app on Fire TVs.
Amazon says IMDb TV has grown significantly over the past two years in the US, with its monthly active users tripling over that time. The company attributes this growth to the service’s ever-increasing availability, frequently updated library, and original content.
That said, it remains to be seen if this rebranding will be successful, especially so late in the game with a name that isn’t tied to any well-known IPs and with so many well-established rivals. Despite the announced success, this is the third time that Amazon has changed the name of its free streaming service. It originally launched as IMDb Freedive in 2019.