Amazon Wants You to Actually Leave Your House Instead of Binge-Watching Its Shows

Releasing episodes of original shows weekly, not all at once

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Yes, you stayed up all night to binge-watch all 13 hours of House of Cards in a row when Netflix released the show in February. But Amazon is not going to let you marathon its own original series, Alpha House.

The online retailing giant said Monday that it will post only the first three episodes of the show on Nov. 15, free online and through game-console apps, the Associated Press reports. After the initial release, Amazon will make one episode per week available exclusively to Amazon Prime subscribers — a service which costs $79 per year and includes free shipping of Amazon purchases. Its second original series, Betas, will follow the same model beginning Nov. 22.

Amazon hopes that the release schedule will fuel more social media chatter for the shows. Some have criticized the Netflix model of releasing an entire season of its original series — like House of CardsOrange Is the New Black and Hemlock Grove — because conversations on Facebook and Twitter about episodes of the show (which can promote the show and earn more viewers) are difficult while everyone watches at a different pace. Some Netflix investors also worried it could encourage customers to binge-watch a season and then cancel their subscription — though the company said its initial experience with House of Cards showed that to be rare.

Roy Price, director of Amazon studios, said in a statement that the schedule is supposed to encourage customers to “chat about the shows and build up anticipation.”

Amazon’s original series will have 11 episodes per season (Netflix shows have 13). Both coming original shows are comedies. Alpha House focuses on four U.S. senators who are roommates, and Betas follows young tech entrepreneurs attempting to create a new mobile social networking app.

[AP]

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