Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Amazon.com begins testing monthly version of Amazon Prime service

Like the idea of Amazon.com's Amazon Prime service, but don't want to be tied to a $79.99 annual expense? Amazon.com has a deal for you (though it's only a trial deal).

Apparently the giant Internet retailer is trying a new idea. Instead of a $79.99 Amazon Prime membership, you can opt for a monthly offer, of $7.99 a month or $95.88 annually. The new option was first seen by a reader at Hacking Netflix’s website, which then confirmed the pricing via Amazon.com's website.

It is a trial, and it doesn't appear everyone can see it. To see the option, first make sure you are not logged into an Amazon Prime account. While the Hacking Netflix user said he had to use Firefox to see the option, others are reporting differently, saying that they can see the $7.99 / month option in all browsers, including Chrome, Safari, and Firefox.

To access the option, click “Join Prime” at the top right of your Amazon.com window, and then select the "Get Started" option to sign up.

Amazon.com hasn’t officially announced the news via press release, which strongly hinted that the change was a test. An Amazon.com spokesperson confirmed this was a test with the following comment: “We are always looking at ways to improve the shopping experience for our customers. We are testing a monthly Prime subscription. Beyond that, we don’t have anything further to offer.”

Amazon Prime gives members free two-day shipping on most items, and reduced one-day shipping.  It also gives members access to Prime Instant Videos, a subset of Amazon.com's streaming video service, and the Kindle Owners' Lending Library, as well.

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