Amazon (AMZN) has announced that it is in the preview phase of a brand-new all-you-can-listen service, Audible Plus, that will provide access to an array of Audible Originals, audiobooks and podcasts for $7.95 a month.
It will offer unlimited access to over 68,000 hours of content and 11,000+ titles from across the content spectrum, including documentaries, comedy, journalism, kids, wellness, self-development and selections from Audible Theater.
Audible is also hoping to lure subscribers with its new Audible Originals selection from celebrities including Kevin Bacon, Kate Mara and Jamie Lee Curtis. The content slate will continue to grow alongside various technical enhancements over the coming months, Audible said.
No doubt Amazon is hoping to boost its offering in light of Spotify’s (SPOT) recent multi-year exclusive licensing deal for The Joe Rogan Experience, which it called ‘one of the most popular podcasts in the world.’ Indeed, Rogan’s podcast was downloaded a jaw-dropping 190 million times per month last year.
With the launch of Audible Plus, Audible’s $14.95 premium credit-based subscription option has been renamed Audible Premium Plus. Premium members will have access to the Audible Plus catalog and will also receive one credit a month which can be used for any piece of content outside the Plus catalog, regardless of price or length, the company says.
Audible Plus begins its initial rollout this week to Audible members, while new customers can sign up to preview the Audible Plus standalone plan from August 27.
Shares in Amazon have been on a steady winning streak jumping a stellar 79% so far this year, with the $3,726 average analyst price target implying 13% upside potential from current levels.
Stifel Nicolaus analyst Scott Devitt recently raised Amazon’s price target to $3,500 from $3,300 and maintained a Buy rating saying that the stock is one of his top large cap growth names.
“The environment for e-commerce remains favorable as the ramifications of the pandemic are staying with us for longer than anticipated. While some have concerns of deceleration in the AWS business, we believe the weaker economic backdrop will lead more customers looking to adopt cloud services to lower costs,” Devitt told investors. “The continued migration will be gradual over time. As the leader in e-commerce and cloud services, Amazon remains a core holding.”
Overall, AMZN scores 38 Buy ratings from analysts versus 1 Hold rating adding up to Strong Buy consensus. (See Amazon stock analysis on TipRanks).
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