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NFL chooses Amazon for Thursday Night Football rights

E-commerce and media company Amazon has acquired live streaming rights to the NFL American football league’s Thursday Night Football franchise, according to multiple reports.

The Bloomberg news agency, citing a source familiar with the agreement, said Amazon will pay $50m (€46.8m) to stream 10 games during the 2017 season. Amazon will replace social media platform Twitter as the NFL’s live streaming partner.

The games will reportedly be exclusively available to Amazon customers with a Prime subscription, which costs $99 a year, or $10.99 a month. Games will continue to be simulcast on television by the CBS and NBC networks, along with cable television broadcaster NFL Network.

Amazon is said to have fought off competition from Twitter, along with fellow social media platform Facebook and video-sharing service YouTube, to secure the rights.

All four companies also held talks with the league last year, with Twitter ultimately winning out with a $10m bid. The link-up led to Twitter agreeing a number of other live streaming deals with various sports, news and entertainment properties.

In a statement reported by Bloomberg, Twitter said: “The NFL was a great partner to launch our strategy and we will continue to work with them to bring great content to our passionate sports fans.”

The NFL selected Twitter as its exclusive partner to deliver a live over-the-top digital stream of Thursday Night Football games to a global audience across all devices and for free during the course of the 2016 regular season.

Twitter streamed the 10 Thursday Night Football games broadcast by NBC and CBS, which were also simulcast on cable-television broadcaster NFL Network, securing the league’s targeted ‘tri-cast’ distribution model of broadcast, cable and digital platforms.