Prime Video unveils long-awaited update to 'worst' streaming content interface

A screenshot of the new Prime Video interface
The roll-out begins today, and will come to iOS devices later this year. Photo credit: Supplied / Amazon Prime Video

Prime Video, widely regarded as having one of the worst user interfaces in the streaming world, has unveiled a new Netflix-like update.

The Amazon-owned video offering has long been criticised for making its content hard to find with illogical organisation and display, but the new look appears to rectify its biggest issues.

From Tuesday the online giant will roll out the new experience on Android devices, as well as smart TVs, Apple TV and game consoles. It will come to iOS later this year, the company said.

Prime Video is available in Aotearoa and competes with the likes of ThreeNow, Neon and Netflix for Kiwis' eyeballs.

Videos available as part of a user's subscription will be clearly indicated with a blue check-mark icon, while those for purchase get a gold shopping bag icon instead.

"We certainly wanted customers to understand the breadth of content available to them, with a clear ingress and being able to know which titles cost extra," said Helena Cerna, global director of product management for Prime Video.

The company has been working on the new interface for around a year and half, with the intention of making it more "cinematic" Cerna said.

The highlight is the moving of the navigation from horizontal across the top, to vertical on the left-hand side of the screen.

The app will launch with up to six primary pages depending on where a user is located - with Home, Store, Find, Live TV, Free With Ads and My Stuff as options.

There will be sub-navigation options to allow further narrowing by content, like television or movies. Also included for the first time is a Top 10 list on the home screen so the most popular content can be easily found.

A new 'Super Carousel' is also being launched, which has larger, poster-styled artwork to allow featured content to stand out.

When a user navigates to content in the Super Carousel, a preview video will be shown.

Early responses have generally supported the new design.

"Props to the folks who worked on the Prime Video redesign: moving towards a more familiar and consistent structure is a great call," one tweeted.

"About damn time. Let's hope the redesign actually makes the customer experience somewhat enjoyable and easy to use cause currently I avoid Prime Video as much as I can," wrote another.

"Prime was long overdue for a redesign. Currently the worst interface among all streamers," a third stated.