Earlier this month, Amazon finally debuted multiple profiles for its Prime Video streaming service around the world. It's an enormous convenience win for users who share accounts, and a step in the right direction for a streamer that could still use a few other UI tweaks.
When you sign in to Prime Video now, you're given the option of creating up to six profiles, for either adults or kids. While the homepage is otherwise unchanged once you've selected a profile, this simple feature brings it closer to the world-beating quality-of-life features of Netflix, its biggest competitor in the streaming space.
The benefits of profiles are obvious: say you're watching a big Amazon Prime original like The Boys, and your partner's dad logs on to watch the same show, because you're each too cheap to get your own login. Previously, your viewings could overlap and you could lose your place, and having just one shared watch list meant your Prime Video experience could be a little bit muddled.
Now, that's not a problem. As part of this addition, you can edit your own watch list on your profile, which personalizes Amazon Prime Video's user experience in a way that wasn't possible before.
As Amazon Prime Video steps it up with even more high-profile originals like the Fallout TV show, The Lords of the Rings prequel series and The Boys season 2, this puts it in a better position to satisfy users.
Still a long way to go
A couple of Amazon Prime Video's other glaring issues could still use addressing – these include its overly enthusiastic efforts to get you to subscribe to paid-for channel add-ons on its homepage, and the fact that searching for a TV show still brings up lots of individual season listings rather than one single hub for a series.
But profiles are a definite step in the right direction for usability, and the actual content offering remains pretty strong in terms of exclusives.
Amazon seems to be thinking more and more about what a contemporary TV offering looks like to a user, with recent live TV additions to Fire devices showing how the retailer is doubling down on offering an all-in-one place for your watching needs.
Now we're curious to see if big gambits like the Fallout TV show and The Lord of the Rings will actually pay off, in the face of Netflix's ever-growing list of expensive originals. If nothing else, the arms race between streaming services is bound to keep giving us a lot of great TV shows.
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