Amazon has struck a deal with HBO for exclusive streaming of all seasons of "The Sopranos," older episodes of "True Blood" and other hits from the cable network.
The unexpected announcement came Wednesday morning, marking the first time ever that non-HBO subscribers will be able to legally stream HBO shows, Yahoo Tech reported.
Starting May 21, Amazon Prime members will be able to binge watch such titles as "Six Feet Under," "The Wire," "Flight of the Conchords" and "Big Love."
Besides HBO TV series, Amazon Prime will offer mini-series hits like "Band of Brothers," "John Adams" and more. Seasons of newer shows like "Girls" and "Veep" will be rolled out on Amazon Prime streaming during the course of a multi-year contract stipulating that previous seasons should be available about three years after airing.
"HBO original content is some of the most-popular across Amazon Instant Video-our customers love watching these shows," Brad Beale, director of content acquisition for Amazon, said in a press release. "Now Prime members can enjoy a collection of great HBO shows on an unlimited basis, at no additional cost to their Prime membership."
Yahoo Tech noted that Netflix was hoping to acquire HBO content for a long time, but CEO Reed Hastings has since stated that the company is looking "to become HBO faster than HBO can become" Netflix.
The streaming service has emerged as a contender in original programming as well as video content with the hit series "House of Cards." Amazon has been looking to build up its online library as well, adding exclusive titles and commissioning original shows.
Amazon Prime Instant Video works through a $99 annual subscription to Amazon Prime, which allows for free two-day shipping.