Lovefilm by Post subscription fees rise

lovefilm dvd rental

AMAZON have announced that prices for their DVD and Blu Ray by post rental service, Lovefilm By Post, will change from next February.

Customers will be moved onto one of three different subscriptions, with prices ranging from £4.99 a month to £11.99.

The news of the price rises comes not long after Amazon implemented what amounts to a ban on sales of Apple TV and Google Chromecast streaming media devices through the site.

Both steps have been criticised for being overly pushy ways to get more people to move to Amazon Prime Video, and ideally through their Amazon Fire TV box or stick.

You still watch DVDs?

At the moment Lovefilm by Post subscribers pay up to £7.99 a month for unlimited DVD rentals, based on having a maximum of two discs at home.

People with Amazon Prime memberships, or who also pay a monthly subscription for Prime Video, pay slightly less, at £6.99 a month.

From February next year, those who still like receiving something other than bills through the post will be expected to pay:

A few years back, Lovefilm customers could expect to get a certain amount of streaming included with their postal subscription - and at least one of the deals they offered allowed users to have up to three DVDs at home at any one time.

While they would have to pay to stream newer or more popular titles, there was a pretty good range of content included in the regular monthly subscription.

But when Amazon bought Lovefilm the emphasis started to shift. The maximum number of discs customers could have at home at any one time was reduced from three to two.

Then the streaming service was expanded, and separated - and postal subscription customers found themselves being signed up, and charged £5.99 a month for it, whether they'd previously used it or not.

What Lovefilm customers get now

If they chose to stick with the service - and the extra subscription fee - the newly converted Prime Video customers were given access to the whole of Amazon's on demand video library.

Those who became full Amazon Prime members for £79 a year - which at the time simply offered free first class delivery - were given a discount on their Lovefilm by Post subscription, as mentioned above.

Given the difference in the amount of content available for the price, a large proportion of people switched to the streaming service completely.

Lovefilm in focus
Lovefilm reviewed
Lovefilm - a history
Amazon take over Lovefilm

Many of those who stuck with the postal service are those for whom a streaming service may have appealed, but it just wasn't practical - a slow or unreliable broadband connection has been cited by many.

Despite the forthcoming price rises, Lovefilm subscriptions will still be about the same price as those of the only other big DVD rental company left in the UK, Cinema Paradiso.

Cinema Paradiso have the edge in terms of the number of titles - 80,000 compared to around 70,000 - and the range of their collection, with far more in the way of world cinema.

Their two-disc unlimited package is practically identical to that Lovefilm will be offering from February - but they also offer slightly more flexibility over the number of DVDs people can rent per month, or the chance to have three discs at home:

What about the streaming?

Finally, there's a new twist in the tale of how Amazon are dealing with rival streaming media devices.

As we reported last week, the online giant recently stopped selling Chromecast streaming devices, and are refusing to stock any of the new Apple TV boxes, on the grounds that the rival devices don't "interact well with Prime Video".

At the time the ban - because they've told third party sellers they can't sell them either - was announced, it looked very much like it was a somewhat heavy handed approach to trying to keep a lid on their main competition.

The competition
Our review of Netflix - here
An in depth look at Now TV - here
How they compare with Amazon Video

After all, they were still selling other devices that didn't support Prime Video somehow, most notably the various Roku boxes.

Roku sell the most streaming media devices per year in the US. They're not so well known over here, but their boxes and sticks include access to almost all the big name streaming content providers - whether free or paid for.

All the terrestrial catch up TV services are on there. Netflix is on there, Now TV is on there; Youtube, Spotify and Vevo are on there. Amazon Video were notable only by their absence - until today.

Roku have confirmed that Amazon's on demand service is "now available on all Roku streaming players in the UK" - making them much less of a rival provider.

The exception to the above is the Roku-made Now TV boxes.

Meant primarily to give viewers access to Sky's own on demand service, Now TV, they don't include Netflix - because that would be giving space to the competition. So it seems unlikely we'll see another of their rivals appearing on the budget smart box any time soon.

Please read our full disclaimer for important information that relates to the service we provide and your use of this site.

We aim to provide free reviews and comparisons of consumer products and to keep our editorial content as objective as possible. To keep the site free, we are paid by some providers when new customers take products after they've clicked on our links. We don't allow our editorial content to be affected by those links, however we may not include all of the products available in the market. Finally, we do not submit or process any applications for any products or services and we cannot guarantee that any product or service listed on this website will be available to you. Credit providers make the final decision on whether an application for credit will be accepted.

If you would like to get in touch with us you can contact us here.