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Amazon Prime tests $7.99/month option to compete with Hulu+, Netflix

Amazon (s AMZN) is offering some users who don’t want to drop $79 on an annual Prime membership another option: Paying $7.99 a month. While that actually adds up to more money on a yearly basis ($95.88), it may bring new users into the fold — and it could help Amazon compete against Hulu+ and Netflix (s NFLX), both of which charge $7.99 a month for their streaming video plans.

“We are always looking at ways to improve the shopping experience for our customers,” an Amazon spokeswoman told me. “We are testing a monthly Prime subscription.”

Amazon Prime gives members free two-day shipping, free streaming of about 25,000 movies and TV shows, and access to the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library. (Prime members who own a Kindle can borrow one book for free per month, from a selection of mostly self-published titles.) The new option is geared toward users who don’t already have Prime memberships and who might be more interested in the movies and TV than the other services.

The option appears to only be available to some users for now, and if you go to the Prime signup page, you may not even see it as an option. I was able to recreate the $7.99/month offer on my own computer, but it took a little doing. I’m an annual Prime member, and when I signed out of my account and checked the Prime options again, I was still pitched the $79/year option. When I switched browsers, though, I saw a screen with the $7.99/month option.

via Hacking Netflix

9 Responses to “Amazon Prime tests $7.99/month option to compete with Hulu+, Netflix”

  1. With Prime you get free shipping. $8/month, if you buy something large and heavy and/or want to express more than a trivial number of items, then it would make sense to subscribe for a month, buy your stuff and get the streaming to boot, then cancel and only put up $8.

  2. Paul Wren

    If you want to take full advantage of Amazon Prime Streaming, you need a Roku ($69) or a TV/Blue-Ray player that supports it. No need to watch on your computer!

  3. FlashPurchase

    Amazon provides great value to their customers. We are looking forward to launching Flash Purchase for the holiday season which will enable consumers to band together to get all the benefits of volume pricing associated with group purchasing and also enable consumers to create their own deals or join existing ones.

  4. I don’t see amazon prime video catching on unless they provide the service with it’s own website with a better ui. Also, I think it confuses people to pay for “unlimited prime videos” only to see that many videos aren’t free.

    I pay for Amazon Prime because I like the 2 day delivery service. The prime video is just an added bonus but I still use netflixs.

    • ravee3rd

      I didn’t realize that everything is not free. But, according to your post, that’s the case. Now I would really have to speak to a rep with Amazon Prime before deciding whether to try it. I mean, whatever package you get with Netflix, EVERYTHING you want to watch is free–there are no paid films. Yes, if this is true, Amazon definitely needs to rethink this whole deal.

      • …but have you seen the selection of Netflix’s unlimited streaming….poor, poor, poor. At least with Prime you have the option of watching a recent movies, which you have to pay for…at a slightly lower price than without prime. That is not an option with Netflix, unless you go with home delivery which just about doubles the price….