The IMDb TV service competes for viewers — and ad dollars — with the Roku Channel, a similar ad-supported VOD service. Under Roku’s standard distribution agreements, it takes 30% of ad inventory on partner channels but the terms of the deal with Amazon for IMDb TV were not disclosed.
The deal will dramatically expand IMDb TV’s reach: Roku said it had 51.2 million active accounts as of the end of 2020. IMDb TV was already available on Amazon’s Fire TV devices, which average more than 50 million monthly users last year, according to the e-commerce giant.
IMDb TV features a lineup of original series from Amazon Studios, including spy thriller “Alex Rider” and docuseries “Top Class: The Life and Times of the Sierra Canyon Trailblazers,” as well as a library of hit movies and shows including full seasons of TV shows such as “Chicago Fire,” “Schitt’s Creek” and “Mad Men” and movies such as “The Maze Runner,” “Ender’s Game” and “Shrek Forever After.”
Other IMDb TV originals premiering in 2021 include true-crime docu-series “Moment of Truth,” the second season of “Alex Rider,” and the untitled Judge Judy Sheindlin project.
Here’s a mock-up of what the IMDb TV app will look like on Roku:
“We are thrilled to provide customers a seamless and easy way to view our broadly appealing content with the distribution of our IMDb TV app onto millions of Roku devices,” Mark Eamer, Amazon’s VP of IMDb TV, OTT and Brand Advertising, said in a statement. “We look forward to delivering our catalog of hit movies, acclaimed series, nostalgic TV and inventive IMDb TV originals to Roku’s engaged customers.”
In addition to the app on the Roku platform, IMDb TV is available as an app on Fire TV; as a free channel in Amazon Prime Video; on the IMDb website; and via IMDb apps across several hundred devices. According to the company, IMDb TV runs half the ads of traditional linear TV.