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Amazon Offers Showtime, Starz as Streaming Partners

Cutting the cable cord can save you a lot of money, but only if you're willing to miss out on some of your favorite premium channel shows. Amazon hopes to make the transition a little bit easier with its announcement of the Streaming Partners Program. This new service ties into an existing Amazon Prime account and offers online networks like Showtime, Starz, A+E and AMC — at a price.

Amazon announced nearly 30 channels that are now available through Streaming Partners. Starz and Showtime, premium cable networks that broadcast hit movies and ambitious original series, are Amazon's star attractions, but the other networks run the gamut from promising to extremely niche.

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Some highlights from the Streaming Partners selection include Dramafever Instant (Korean soap operas), Tribeca Shortlist (classic movies), Smithsonian Earth (nature documentaries), Hooplakidz Plus (children's programming) and Ring TV Boxing (exactly what it sounds like). You can find a full list at Amazon's website, complete with instructions on how to sign up for each one.

All of the services offer free trials; after that, they tend to cost between $5 and $10 per month, on top of an existing $99-per-year Amazon Prime subscription. Showtime and Starz will be just $8.99 per month. On its own Showtime costs $11 per month. 

In addition to keeping all of your subscriptions in one place, Amazon suggests that there will be other advantages for viewers who take advantage of the Streaming Partners Program. The latest episodes on TV networks will be available at the same time as the cable broadcast, and Prime members will also receive a price break compared to each service's à-la-carte price. Those who have Fire and Fire TV devices can take advantage of IMDb's X-Ray integration (which tells you about the actors onscreen). The services will also appear as part of Fire's unified search and voice search protocols.

For users who want these channels and already subscribe to Amazon Prime, the Streaming Partners Program could be a convenient way to save some money.