Amazon offers prime membership service for free global shipping and video streaming

Enlarge Image Some of the products available on Amazon Handmade.                  Screenshot by Ashlee Clark Thompson  CNET

While free shipping and the ability to purchase worldwide goods at lower cost are Amazon's main draw for Singaporeans, it has upped its features to include streaming with the launch of Amazon Prime.

The monthly membership fee for Amazon Prime in Singapore is priced at S$8.99 a month, but customers can sign up at a promotional rate of S$2.99 a month for an unspecified limited period of time. "Customers in Singapore have been enjoying ultra-fast delivery with Prime Now since July, and now, the introduction of Amazon Prime will take their shopping experience to the next level", said Jamil Ghani, vice president, Amazon Prime worldwide. "We will keep making Prime better, adding even more selection and benefits".

They will also enjoy access to its video streaming service Prime Video and gaming subscription service Twitch Prime. And this is just the beginning.

Its service, which offers free two-hour delivery from its local warehouse with a minimum order of $40 between 10 am and 10 pm daily via the Prime Now app, will also be made exclusive for members.

While existing Amazon Prime Video subscribers in Singapore will not be forced into joining Prime, it will no longer be available for subscription as a standalone service.

Fans of gaming and video-streaming service Twitch will also be able to enjoy gaming perks, free channel subscription and commercial-free viewing.

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"Now, with the launch of Amazon Prime, Singapore consumers can finally have access to these products and services, and can get more value when they shop on Prime Now".

Prime members in Singapore can try all of the benefits of Amazon Prime for free for 30 days.

He added that Prime membership is "country-specific and not-transferable" so those with United States memberships are unable to use it locally, and that he encouraged Singaporeans "to leverage the Prime membership package developed specifically for Singapore".

According The Straits Times, Singapore is the 16th country and the first in Southeast Asia to enjoy this service.

But in what was seen as the first step toward developing a major footprint in the fragmented region of 600 million people, some customers were underwhelmed by its initial limited product categories and it faced tough competition from rivals, such as Lazada.

About Amazon Amazon is guided by four principles: customer obsession rather than competitor focus, passion for invention, commitment to operational excellence, and long-term thinking.

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