Heads-up: Amazon Prime subscriptions getting price hike to $99 next week

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It’s not often we get a lot of bad news from Amazon, so it tends to stand out when it happens. Unfortunately, today’s news affects Phandroid readers who use Amazon Kindle Fire devices (or use Amazon for shopping in general).

Amazon has formally announced plans to make Amazon Prime a bit tougher on your wallet, with the company increasing the full cost of a year’s membership by $20. Here’s Amazon’s quick justification of it all:

Even as fuel and transportation costs have increased, the price of Prime has remained the same for nine years. Since 2005, the number of items eligible for unlimited free Two-Day Shipping has grown from one million to over 20 million. We also added unlimited access to over 40,000 movies and TV episodes with Prime Instant Video and a selection of over 500,000 books to borrow from the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library.

The change will go into effect next week for new customers, while those already on Amazon Prime will be charged $99 whenever their renewal date comes up (whether that’s tomorrow or a full year from now). We’re also hearing Amazon Prime Student customers will get a slight price bump as well, with the service going from $39 to $49.

It’s an unfortunate change, but considering the perks you get with Amazon Prime some may still find it worth the cost and hassle. Here’s the quick list of everything Amazon Prime affords you:

  • Free 2-day shipping for all Prime orders
  • $3.99 overnight shipping (per item) for all Prime orders
  • Unlimited instant video streaming
  • Monthly Kindle book rentals

When you consider all those factors, Amazon Prime might still be one of the sweetest deals in town for some. Regardless, we’re sure there will be many people unhappy with the change, so it’s up to you to decide if all those benefits are worth an extra $20 per year (which really amounts to mere pennies a day).

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  • KGB

    Still lame they don’t have an instant video app for Android. The price increase would have been a moot point for me if they had concurrently released an Android version of their app.

    • Fifth313ment

      What he said! ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

      • nsciucco

        I dont use prime and still get packages in 2-3 days

        • Dan

          same here, free shipping is usually 2 days for me

        • Brian

          Without prime you have to meet the minimum purchase amount of $35.

    • AtomicCEO

      Yeah, I just went and set mine not to auto-renew. It’s a struggle for me to find a way to stream Amazon Video. My phone and tablet aren’t supported, and my media center is WMC, which they don’t support. I suppose I could get a Chromecast, but I want to just use a remote.

      • Chad Vincent

        Chromecast won’t help, unless you’re casting from Chrome on a laptop/desktop…

        We use a XBox 360 in the living room, and a Roku in the bedroom. Netflix is still more flexible, but we still get our use out of Prime Video.

  • blest

    Shiiiiiid I pay forty a year with my student discount lol

    • Michael Livote

      Well, now you’ll be paying $50.00….

      • blest

        Oooooh nooooo! But nah I just signed up today. For a year I’ll be paying forty.

  • James_C_L

    What pisses me off these days is that more than half my prime packages are late bc of the ups/usps hand off. And now a lot of items that were prime now require a $25 purchase to qualify for prime. I could give 2 phucks about the movie streaming to be quite honest

    • Ian Woloschin

      Call up Amazon and tell them that your packages are arriving late, which is unacceptable since you’re paying for a specific service (2 day shipping). Request, or demand, a refund that you deem to be “fair” based on your usage of Prime’s “Free” 2 day shipping. I’ve had this happen a handful of times, and Amazon is very quick to provide a refund or gift card.

      For what it’s worth, I just had a package arrive overnight via Prime “2 Day” shipping. I’ve also got three other packages arriving in 2 Days this week. For me, Amazon Prime is still totally worth it.

    • Michael Livote

      I couldn’t agree more, I did not renew this year because of almost never getting any package in two days…and I live in a major city. I was actually surprised when one did come in in two days. The movie streaming was useless, any movie/tv show worth watching required you paying for it(where’s the “free” in that??), and not having an app for non Fire users to stream with was the final nail in the coffin.
      Also worth mentioning is that when I spent a few extra minutes on Amazon considering other options for an item besides those with Prime, the prices from other vendors were almost always lower, and many of them had free shipping to boot. Good riddance I say!

      • KOLIO

        I like AMAZON & AMAZON PRIME,but,with some misgivings,today I canceled my PRIME Membership.

        Not for the cost &/or the upcoming price increase,but,for UPS’ nonchalant attitude/service.

        Tired of packages being left @ the door w/o so much as a knock.
        Several calls to UPS were about as useful as tits on a boar hog.
        So,today (in addition to several other days),after two packages were left at my neighbor’s doorstep,yet again,w/o so much a a knock on the door,I called AMAZON.

        No sooner than the CSR stated that it was the driver’s discretion (under a certain $ amount) whether they choose to make an attempt to deliver,or,just leave the packages for anyone who walks by,I blew up & demanded a pro-rated refund.

        AMAZON took it a step further & refunded the entire 12 month fee of $79.
        A nice gesture,however,I’d preferred to stay w/PRIME if an actual attempt to deliver,instead of tossing a package on the doorstep like a free weekly newspaper.

        I just don’t understand, in what universe,is it OK to just leave packages laying about,outdoors,unsecured,for anything,or,anyone to happen upon them?USPS doesn’t do it (at least in my town),so,if the commercial/private couriers are supposedly superior to the USPS,what gives?

        I was assured that my concerns would be forwarded to the powers that be @ AMAZON & UPS.

        I’m not holding my breath for any changes coming about…………

        • Michael Livote

          Yep, but I had the opposite problem you had. UPS would hand off to USPS and USPS would just leave the package at my door(so they said..)…in the middle of a busy apartment building in the Bronx, NY…never once did I actually get one of those packages, but I’m sure my “friendly” neighbors got some nice stuff…Amazon did indeed make up for it each and every time(they do have great customer service, even without Prime), but that just added on to the already ridiculous ship times that were caused by using “UPS Mail Innovations”.

        • Henri Weich Conradie

          Comment too wordy. Exterminate comment!

          • KOLIO

            Says the poster who feels the need to use a 3-word screen name………

    • BoonZ

      I echo what Ian said. I’ve had this happen to me and any time I’ve addressed it with Amazon they’ve made things right with me. I also have often gotten my 2 day shipping items the next day, so bonus there. I haven’t run into the $25 minimums much, but I can see how that would be annoying.

      For me its still worth it with the increase (especially since I split it w/other “household members”). I don’t use the streaming service much, but I do appreciate the fact that they have expanded the Prime program over the years to include these other things.

    • Wigdogg

      Not being funny seems your Amazon prime in the US doesn’t seem that good. I’m only saying this on the experience of what I use which is the UK Prime. We get a really good next day service with no minimums (I get the fact the US is a lot bigger).

  • Albert Orange

    I have Prime Student and it is a good deal at $49. But even at $99 regular Prime you can have 5 people on an account. Just split the costs… $20 ea.

    • Brian

      Yes, but you all technically have to be living in the same house.
      http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html/ref=hp_left_v4_sib?nodeId=200444180

      • Albert Orange

        But it really isn’t enforced. I did it when I had a consumer account (Before I enrolled in school.)

    • Jurk

      But 4 of those people would only have the shipping perks. Still kind of worth it if all you care about is the shipping.

    • Charles Sweeney

      Come again? up to 5 people on one account? How so? I’d like to set this up asap!

      Edit: Nevermind, I just figured it out!

  • MisterMints

    At least they are bringing the USA in line with the UK. Amazon put our pierces up to £79 (from £49) earlier this month when they closed the Love Film service and rebranded it as prime. Not a lot of people were happy as many have no interest in streaming their poor selection of films and TV shows, the cost of the service being higher than the rest of the world’s equivalent and still no Android app unless you have a Kindle. I’ll be cancelling my membership at renewal date.

    • MisterMints

      And by pierces I of course mean prices!

  • guitarist5122

    I think I’ll be done with Prime. Really got it because it was cheaper to subscribe for their diapers. Everything else was a plus. If they release the android app for prime video, I’ll get it again.

    • ChristianMcC

      I agree, no one wants their kindle fires, so just give the rest of us on Android the app, without having to sideload.

      • Teddy Stanowski

        really? because it serves a niche very well in the tablet market and their sales numbers show it. i have the hdx and honestly its perfect for me, my droid ultra does everything else

  • earth

    I’m cancelling as I don’t watch video (prefer Netflix/Chromecast) and there are alternative. Newegg is only $50 if I recall. And using shopping dot google shows lowest price including shipping if any. If Prime kept the price the same for shipping only, I’d stick with it.

    • Wigdogg

      Same as. When my my prime runs out this time next year i’m done (although will be handy to have everything at the same price till next year)!

    • h4rr4r

      Newegg has so much less stuff. Otherwise I would do the same.

  • JaswinderSinghJammu

    I mostly use Amazon for free shipping. Amazon videos are pretty much crapshoot

    • mcl630

      Same here. Got Prime for the free shipping. There’s one show on Prime Video I watch occasionally but that’s it. Even if Prime only offered the free shipping, it would still be worth it.

  • TONY ALDO

    What they should do is break it out. Say you want shipping only you pay X amount you want shipping + video you pay this amount. $50 for unlimited free shipping seems reasonable.

  • steveb944

    I don’t know if to keep it anymore, most things I get cost $35+. Sucks that mine renews in April so I have to pay the $50. Decisions decisions.

  • CodyTaylor

    It is still a worthwhile service. The continued lack of support for Android is still disappointing and stupid. I use prime through my ps3/4 but would be nice to be able to get it on my tablet

    • Powsniffer0110

      I just streamed from the browser on my tab. Worked perfect

      • CodyTaylor

        It’s doable of course, but for most people the flash requirement is going to be a hurdle they won’t overcome. Amazon has walled off their service from a lot of people, still disappointing, even if there are workarounds

  • JBrowne1012

    Amazon prime was amazing before all of this extra crap but amazon is forgetting the fact that people are in prime for the shipping value of which is no longer a value because of ups and usps

  • Perry_F

    They really should break out the price and offer different prime plans. Shipping only or shipping + video service. Truth is I use their video service like once or twice a year since netflix has so many more movies. And the kindle borrow benefit is lost on me since I don’t own a kindle. Might have to rethink my options when my prime account is due for renewal in July.

  • TheAtheistReverend

    I’ve already decided to drop prime. The whole reason I got it in the first place was for free 2 day shipping, but every other order is delayed for some reason. Their customer support on the subject hasn’t helped one bit either.

  • Teddy Stanowski

    rumors of music stream service to be included…. this can slightly justify the price increase if the library is more stacked than spotify… i hate it when songs get pulled… but understandably travel costs getting high make sense, but then again i am having delays as well from ups… they need to either use the post office or work with fedex because getting my packages at home at 7pm is annoying (unless you get your shipments to your work address in which business always comes first)