Be prepared to be scared: AMC Networks has begun an invite-only beta test of their horror-centric OTT video service Shudder. The service offers streaming access to full-length ad-free horror movies, and wants to eventually launch on a number of TV streaming devices. Its technology is being powered by and Softbank-owned online video platform Dramafever.
Consumers who previously signed up on Shudder’s public pre-launch website have started to get invites over the last 24 hours, and can now join the service for two free months. After that, Shudder is charging $4.99 a month, or $49.99 for a full year. An AMC Networks spokesperson confirmed the beta test Tuesday, but said that there’s no firm date yet for Shudder coming out of beta.
Shudder currently offers access to more than 200 movies, including titles like the Korean horror movie “A Tale of Two Sisters,” cult classic “Nosferatu” and Swedish cult vampire movie “Let the Right One In.” The site also features curated collections for topics like “urban decay” or “romantic bloodsuckers.”
Interestingly, there also is a pre-programmed feed called Shudder.tv that airs horror movies non-stop in a TV network-like fashion — something that bodes well for Google’s recent move to turn apps into linear TV networks on its Android TV platform. At the moment, Shudder is only streaming in the browser, but the website promises apps for iOS, Android and Roku for the near future.
Shudder is part of a wider cooperation between Dramafever and AMC Networks that also included the relaunch of AMC’s SundanceNow streaming service last year. Both services target a smaller but highly engaged audience that isn’t served well by traditional TV networks — a model that Dramafever has also long been using for its own, Korean drama-focused niche video subscription service.