Amazon told its 25 million Prime customers that they’re in for a rate increase, with the online giant boosting the annual fee by 25% to $99, reports The New York Times.
The new price will take effect April 17. While the service includes free two-day shipping for customers, it also provides access to 40,000 movies and TV shows that are bundled into the Prime membership.
For some, that became an issue in the complaints, the story notes.
“Amazon is passing on the cost of video to a bunch of people addicted to buying online,” said Fiona Dias, chief strategy officer for retailing network ShopRunner. “Maybe it sticks in their craw that they’re now being asked to pay more for stuff they don’t want.”
In a discussion thread called “Who else won’t renew Amazon Prime at $99,” the video service was singled out as a problem by annoyed customers.
“I doubt I will be Amazon Prime renewing at the new $99 rate next January. I joined Prime for the shipping option, not for Kindle lending privileges, and not for streaming video,” one consumer wrote. “I’d consider remaining a Prime Member if Amazon allowed members to opt out of the Kindle library and streaming options in exchange for a lower price.”
Another user wrote, “Amazon claims it’s the increased cost of gas and shipping, but it seems more like we’re paying extra to subsidize college students and for streaming video that most Prime subscribers don’t use or want.”
Still, investors cheered the price increase, keeping Amazon’s shares steady on a day when the markets were down, The Times notes.