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Amazon cuts Prime to £59 ahead of 20th anniversary clearout

Barry Collins
6 Jul 2015
Amazon Prime Day
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Amazon Prime Day to offer huge discounts on goods - but only if you're a subscriber

Amazon is making a huge push to sign people up for its Prime subscription service, by slashing the cost of the first year and preparing a day of exclusive offers for Prime members to mark its 20th birthday. The company is offering Prime membership for £59 for the first year - knocking a quarter of the regular £79 price - but only until July 8. 

That comes ahead of what Amazon's calling Prime Day on July 15, in which the company says it will offer Prime members double the number of deals that it normally has for its pre-Christmas shopping bonanza, Black Friday. Prime Day will include discounts on electronics, video games, movies and other goods. The deals will start at midnight, with new offers arriving as often as every ten minutes.

Amazon is clearly desperate to hook as many customers to Prime subscriptions as possible. The Prime package has been massively expanded in recent years, having started life primarily as a free delivery service. Now customers get all sorts of additional extras, including unlimited movie and TV streaming from Prime Instant Video, unlimited online photo storage, and access to the Kindle Owner's Lending Library of half a million ebooks.

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The one glaring omission from Amazon Prime is any kind of music streaming. Although Amazon does offer a Music service that delivers streams of purchased MP3 albums and CDs, it doesn't yet deliver a rival to Spotify, Apple Music and others.  

There is a catch with the £59 deal: payments start right away, whilst Amazon normally offers a 30-day free trial of Prime, effectively giving you a month for free. You can still sign up for the 30-day trial, but you won't get the £59 offer price.

Amazon actually started life as Cadabra back in 1994, before owner Jeff Bezos changed it to Amazon.com before the site went online in the summer of 1995. The company originally started out as a discount bookseller. Now, it's pretty difficult to find something that Amazon doesn't sell. The retailer (or its third-party partners) now flogs anything from toothpaste, to tropical fish tanks, to wheelchairs to a 20in canvas print of the C-List television presenter, Paul Ross, which has the best customer reviews of any item on the entire site.

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