Leaked Amazon Prime numbers say 26M U.S. subscribers use video service

Newly surfaced internal Amazon Prime numbers from early 2017 suggest that the service’s films and TV series attracted a U.S. audience of about 26 million.

According to Reuters, which obtained company documents detailing the SVOD’s performance, Amazon Prime Video's top shows drew in about 5 million new Prime customers by early 2017. The documents reveal cost, viewership and numbers of Prime subscribers generated by 19 Prime Originals from late 2014 to early 2017.

The report specifically mentions “The Man in the High Castle,” an Amazon Prime Original drama that premiered in 2015, as having 8 million U.S. viewers as of early 2017. Reuters said that the show lured in 1.15 million subscribers worldwide and cost $72 million to make and market; therefore, it attracted new Prime customers at an average cost of $63 per subscriber.

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That cost per subscriber is significantly less than the $99 per year that new Amazon Prime subscribers pay for service that includes access to Prime Video as well as perks like free two-day shipping.

Amazon spends a lot annually on content for Prime Video but still trails SVOD rivals like Netflix. In 2017, Netflix spent an estimated $6 billion on original content and Amazon spent an estimated $4.5 billion. In 2018, Netflix could spend as much as $8 billion.

Amazon ended 2017 with about 60 million Prime subscribers in the U.S. Netflix ended 2017 with 54.75 million U.S. subscribers.

Earlier this year, Amazon revealed that it would be increasing Prime subscription costs by about 18%.

The annual cost for Amazon Prime is staying the same, but subscribers paying on a monthly basis will see their rates jump from $10.99 per month to $12.99 per month. The monthly student rate is also increasing, from $5.49 to $6.49 per month.

Memberships that only offer access to Amazon Prime Video will remain at $8.99 per month.