Amazon Instant Video may gain free tier (with ads) next week

In addition to a new set-top box piece of hardware for living rooms, Amazon has been tipped to be launching a free video streaming service. This service would be running alongside its already-running Amazon Instant Video brand, likely offering up different content on the whole. With Amazon Instant Video hosting both TV shows and top-tier movies, it's difficult to guess what a new free service would contain.

This tip about a free service comes from an anonymous source speaking with the Wall Street Journal. This tipster suggests that Amazon may – instead of running two services – drop their Amazon Instant Video service, so to speak, in favor of a new model. That is to say instead of connecting Instant Video to Amazon Prime, Amazon would disconnect entirely.

The company would also have advertisements running at times with the content to subsidize the cost of sending out shows and movies for free. The service is also said to work with more than just movies and TV shows in a traditional manner – they may also be hosting music videos.

The Amazon event that'll contain all finalized information is set to take place next week. Running as an ad-supported video streaming network could entice users to upgrade to a non-advertising-supported Amazon Instant Video, pulling in and upgrading as no other video service does today. It's either Netflix with no ads, Hulu (paid with ads), or Instant Video, and with a service with two tiers of features, there may be a big change in store – soon!