Oh bother, another subscription service is about to get a huge price hike. Amazon Australia has quietly decided that it’s time to catch up with inflation and up the subscription cost for its Prime service.
If you want to avoid paying more, your best option is to pick up a yearly subscription for AU$59 before May 24 if you’re a new subscriber. This will give you one more sweet year with the service before having to pay its latest fees. As a new customer, you’ll be entitled to a free 30-day trial, so you effectively get 13 months of Prime access at a lower cost.
Starting May 24, 2023, both the monthly and yearly subscription price of Amazon Prime for new members will increase by AU$3p/m and AU$20p/a. That means, if you’re a new customer signing up on or after May 24, you’ll be either paying AU$9.99 per month or AU$79 a year for all that Amazon Prime has to offer, including Prime Video.
If you happen to be an existing member, you likely would have already received an email from Amazon notifying you of the price increase. In case you haven’t, this hike comes into effect on June 28, 2023, for all existing Prime subscribers, payable at your next renewal date.
Now, to be fair, Amazon Prime does give members a decent selection of perks in Australia. Not only are members privy to exclusive discounts and deals, plus same-day shipping in select Sydney and Melbourne postcodes for some Prime-eligible products, there’s also a stack of content linked to this service.
With Prime Video, Prime Gaming, Prime Music and Prime Reading included in a subscription, members have a huge library of shows, movies, games, songs, ebooks and more to choose from.
And with Amazon Prime Day likely kicking off in mid-July, it might be best to sneak in a subscription ahead of time to make the most of Amazon’s biggest sale of 2023, without breaking the bank on a subscription.
Analysis: Could this price hike slow down Prime Video’s new subscriber rate?
According to Kantar, Prime Video has led the way for new subscription video on demand (SVOD) signups since Q1 2022, but even more so in 2023. Beating out competitors such as Netflix, Disney Plus, Binge and Stan here in Australia, it’ll be interesting to see how this price hike impacts the service’s subscriber rate in the later half of the year.
Overall, while less people are cancelling their subscriptions, according to the same report, cost still continues to be the main contributing factor for people jumping ship. Netflix, Disney Plus and Stan have taken the brunt of these cancellations and Amazon Prime Video has gone relatively unscathed, with Kantar even noting that 48% of subscribers are satisfied with Prime Video due to its cost effectiveness.
At AU$6.99 per month, Prime has been an affordable subscription when compared to what some other countries pay. For example, Prime customers in the US pay US$15 a month (or US$139 annually), but they do get a lot more perks than we do. Regular Amazon shoppers would easily make up that subscription price in the savings that come from free shipping, particularly on international purchases.
While this jump to AU$9.99 per month pulls the service closer to other streaming platforms, like Netflix’s AU$10.99p/m Basic plan (without ads), it may still be cost effective… if you are a regular Amazon shopper, watch Prime Video regularly (why wouldn’t you when there’s so much to watch?) and use the other perks like Prime Reading and Prime Gaming too. There really aren’t other such subscription services that offer this much, certainly not eBay Plus or Kogan First (and the latter costs AU$99 a year by the way).
It’s getting harder to justify keeping more than one subscription service. While SVOD cancellations have stabilised all-around, it might not stay that way for long, especially if more services follow Amazon and up the price. Since December of 2022 we’ve seen Disney Plus increase its price, plus Binge introduced ad support to its cheapest tier, meaning that you have to subscribe for its AU$16.99p/m Standard tier to enjoy an ad-free streaming experience.