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Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos  (Source: Salon)
More price hikes likely in store for Amazon customers

For those that frequently shop on Amazon.com year round (or even just during the holiday shopping season), Amazon Prime is like a gift from the gods. The service allows customers to get packages delivered to their home with two business days (sometimes even faster if you’re close to an Amazon distribution center), gives users access to a growing digital video library (movies, TV shows, original programming) and special Kindle “lending” perks.
 
However, it appears that the $79/year Prime membership may be getting a lot more expensive. Citing increased shipping costs; Amazon CFO Tom Szkutak made it clear that the online retail giant is “considering” a price hike for Prime membership.
 
According to Szkutak, that price increase could be anywhere from $20 to $40, which would put an Amazon Prime membership at $119/year if the bean counters get everything they want.
 
The writing has been on the wall as Prime has been around at the same $79/year price for nine years, and Amazon recently bumped the free shipping threshold for non-Prime members to $35 (from $25) on orders.
 
Amazon has also come further under assault from tax collectors in various states, with North Carolina residents becoming the latest to “face the music” when it comes to paying taxes on Amazon purchases.

Source: The Verge



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RE: I'd pay it. I can't go back now.
By techmedics2078 on 1/30/2014 6:33:20 PM , Rating: 4
While there is value in a Prime membership, as I am a member myself, your statement is absurd, in my opinion.

$80.00 a year is high enough already for the paltry content on Amazon Prime Video (although all the services lack in a total entertainment package), in conjunction with the 2 day free shipping. Prime's value is in it's total package and none of it's individual features.

The whole concept behind the Prime membership (besides adding value for customer who already shop at Amazon.com) is that people who KNOW they're going to get free shipping on a purchase will frequent that online retailer more than another, and more often. The concept works.

I've spent more in 2013 on Amazon purchases than all previous years of having an Amazon.com account COMBINED.

Last year was the first year I had a Prime account and I can say with 100% confidence that knowing I had fee shipping because of my membership directly affected my decision to shop at Amazon.com VS going to a brick and mortar. Those decisions were because of convenience, NOT price.

The simple fact of the matter is that Amazon.com prices for items just isn't that much lower than brick and mortar retailers any more (and in some cases is absurdly higher). It's about convenience now, not price.

Amazon Prime is the tipping point between price and convenience and right now the price is right.

For me, personally, if it goes any higher than it is currently, I'm going to cancel and only shop when my order would regularly exceed the free shipping limit for non-Prime members. A higher price for membership devalues the service unless they significantly beef up the components of the offer (i.e. free 1 day shipping and a much, MUCH stronger video library with a free premium movie rental once or twice a month).


RE: I'd pay it. I can't go back now.
By Reclaimer77 on 1/31/14, Rating: 0
RE: I'd pay it. I can't go back now.
By troysavary on 2/1/2014 7:07:02 AM , Rating: 2
So because he is on the edge of finding it valuable now and may not stay with it if the price goes up, he's on drugs? What the hell is with you and your need to hurl insults if people don't like what you like?


By Reclaimer77 on 2/1/2014 9:41:40 AM , Rating: 2
Oh, that?

Yeah I wrote a long well thought out post, and Daily Tech's spam filter ate it and I got pissed off.

So I paraphrased it with that statement. Not as eloquent, granted, but hey what do you want from me.


RE: I'd pay it. I can't go back now.
By FITCamaro on 1/31/2014 8:10:43 AM , Rating: 2
I'm kind of on board with you. The prices aren't really any cheaper for the most part. And in another 2 years, we'll be paying sales tax on Amazon purchases as well here. So then there's really no value to it. Then we're just paying for convenience to not have to go to the store. And that's not THAT big of an inconvenience.


By Reclaimer77 on 2/2/2014 7:26:42 AM , Rating: 2
I disagree. With the added sales tax, Prime becomes even more attractive. Because the shipping savings absolutely wipes out the loss from paying sales tax on most items. You still come out ahead.

The last PC case I ordered was nearly 50 pounds. The shipping alone would have been over $25 without Prime. And no store in my area carried it, so it's not just about convenience.


RE: I'd pay it. I can't go back now.
By MrBlastman on 1/31/2014 10:15:51 AM , Rating: 3
I'm pretty stingy (frugal) myself. I'll usually wait until I can load up an order past the threshold required for free shipping and then I'll buy stuff off Amazon. I don't mind waiting a few days to get the things usually, either. So... I've never bothered buying Prime membership. The movies are no value to me as I already have Netflix which has more stuff to watch--though lately the streaming content even there has been lacking.


RE: I'd pay it. I can't go back now.
By Rukkian on 1/31/2014 11:43:38 AM , Rating: 2
When I have looked at the free stuff on the streaming library, it is just not worth it, now if they up that, and get at least to a Netflix level, I could see paying the fees, however, I also get the shipping portion of prime for free, as my brother has it, and once you pay for it, you can give the shipping benefits to 2 others to use for free. I do not get the other perks (free video library being one), but the prime membership is very nice.


RE: I'd pay it. I can't go back now.
By FlyBri on 1/31/2014 4:16:15 PM , Rating: 2
It's not even getting to the level of Netflix with their content, but the fact that there are no native apps for mobile to watch it except on Amazon hardware. They need to open up Amazon Prime Video to all mobile devices.


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