Amazon Mulling ‘Prime’ Price Hike

Cost could increase from $20 to $40

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Amazon announced Thursday that it might increase the cost of Amazon Prime subscriptions, as it released lackluster quarterly earnings.

During a conference call with investors, the company said Prime subscription, which offer members receive free two-day shipping and access to Amazon’s instant video service and Kindle “lending library,” could increase from $20 to $40 to cover rising fuel and shipping costs, CNBC reports.

Prime has been a key part of Amazon’s strategy to get consumers to buy more and more products through the Web retailing giant. Over 1 million people signed up for the service in the third week of December alone, CNBC reports, though the company has not disclosed how many people actively use the service.

“It’s a good time to be an Amazon customer,” CEO Jeff Bezos said in a statement. “You can now read your Kindle gate-to-gate, get instant on-device tech support via our revolutionary Mayday button, and have packages delivered to your door even on Sundays. In just the last weeks, Forrester, YouGov, and ForeSee have all ranked Amazon #1—and we believe we’re just scratching the surface of what world-class customer service can be.”

The company’s fourth quarter earnings were lower than expected, however. Amazon reported earnings of 51 cents per share, while expected earnings were about 66 cents per share.

[CNBC]

11 comments
BobSinning
BobSinning

It seems as greed is coming out of the shadows,its pointless to keep the prime if they will jack up the price where it wont pay for itself after a year of owning the subscription , there is Netflix,which you can watch on the kindle,email, I think Amazon is going down a road  they should be considering wisely.

wrigglyseed
wrigglyseed

The point everyone's missing here is - many people, including myself, bought Kindles to use with Prime at the $79 (or less) rate.  If, indeed, the rate goes up, there will be a lot of people wishing they hadn't bought one or more Kindle Fire tablets, but had purchased a different tablet that isn't crippled as the Kindle tablets are - after all, there's still Netflix.  


Back in the 80s as a kid hobby, I ran a BBS - turned out to be one of the more popular ones - and when every once in awhile I'd solicit funds to pay my burgeoning long distance bill - just five dollars - no-one except the newer, or charitable users would ever pay up.  I learned then, long before now, that getting people to pay for an online experience, other than for porn, is futile.  Even the heaviest, most reliable users were loathe to cough up a dime.  After all, there's another BBS (read:website) just a few digits away.


Lesson learned: Make 'em pay - they won't stay.


HagrinasMivali
HagrinasMivali

"could increase from $20 to $40..." Should say "could increase by $20 to $40..." Get with it, editors.

thats_so_robyns
thats_so_robyns

I use my university email, even though I have graduated, to get it half price. It's worth it for $40 a year.

SpaldingJones
SpaldingJones

Barely worth the price now. Only doing this for greedy wall street to keep up with the overpriced point they're valued at.

_csosa
_csosa

Well, still no prime video app for android, so a price hike will mean I will cancel my prime subscription. I do use the 2 day shipping a lop, but it's not a big necessity.


chokingkojak
chokingkojak

If it's to account for higher wages for Amazon workers, then bring it.  I've been a Prime user for a couple of years.  But keep it reasonable, Bezos.  No news here, but even some of your customers willing to pay more have their "walk-away" thresholds.

BernieDC
BernieDC

I would like to see a prime choice - I have prime but I never borrow books and rarely watch videos. For me, an increase in cost may prompt me to drop it.

The really heavy users would be the ones to keep it and I don't think that's what Amazon would want to happen. It's people like me who pay for it but don't use it much that provide the profit that balances out the really heavy users.

celia.cortner
celia.cortner

To Whom It May Concern:

A Time Magazine article on Google News reports that you are considering raising Prime fees.  I want to point out that there are some of us who do not find the shipping to be of much help at all on the Prime account - either because we order from vendors for which the Prime shipping does not apply and/or we use other non-product-shipping features, such as the Prime video service.  At $79/year, this feature is maxed out for me and any increase designed to line the pockets of institutional investors over the loyalty of customers will result in a cancelled account.  Put that factor into your calculations before making such a decision.

By the way,  I found it rather interesting that Amazon goes out of its way to be sure that contacting the company to make a statement such as this, is not easy.  There is no "Contact Us" or give us "Feedback" button or page.  Maybe that's because you don't really care what we users think only what institutional investors/Wall Street thinks.  That will work for a while, but keep it up and there won't be as many of us around to ignore.

smoothpancakes
smoothpancakes

@celia.cortner  Hey stupid, there is a Contact Us button, that lets you contact them about concerns or questions with everything from an order you placed, to digital services, to Kindle, to promotions or deals, or anything else.  Just because you're too ignorant to locate the easily accessible Contact Us button, does not mean it's not there and that they are ignoring their customers.


In fact, I've found Amazon's customer service to be one of the most accessible and one of the best overall.  Every time I've had to contact their customer services about something, they've bent over backwards to solve the issue, and have more than once given refunds or account credits for future purchases in apology of any issues or problems I've experienced.  Based on your comment, I doubt Amazon would miss you.

KevinKlepp
KevinKlepp

@smoothpancakes What is it like to be a real D-bag?  What reason was there to call someone stupid?  No, the same way there was no purpose or reason for me to call you a d-bag.


To the rest of the world:  I have found the perfect person.  Someone who has never made a mistake or overlooked anything in their life.  Their name is smoothpancakes.  You can stop looking for the perfect person, I have found them here on Time.com.