I unwittingly bought an Amazon Prime membership a few years ago. (The free trial trick gets me every time.) But that first accidental payment was worth every penny. Because even years later, Amazon Prime is still the best deal in tech.
Hardly a week goes by when you don’t hear about something dreadful Amazon is doing to squeeze pennies out of its customers. Last week, it emerged that Amazon was selling popular video games and movies to Prime members only, including Grand Theft Auto V, Rainbow Six: Siege, FIFA 16 and Assassin's Creed Syndicate. Of course, Amazon isn’t the only place to buy those games — but it’s probably going to be the cheapest.
So, Amazon has created an appealing, membership-based experience that makes you feel like you can only get good deals if you shop at their store. I price-check obsessively and Amazon almost always offers the better deal that’s sweetened by the fast, free Prime shipping. It’s also just really convenient to buy new jeans, a RAM upgrade, and deodorant in the same order. (That was literally my last Amazon order.) I buy almost everything from Amazon because it feels like I need to get my money’s worth. I’ve even started renting movies on Amazon, because I blew through the free catalogue of space operas in a few weekends. It’s all so easy, just like Jeff Bezos said it would be.
Then there’s the evil element. Amazon locking people out of buying certain products isn’t all that bad, but the fact that it’s starting to target top sellers by making budget version of their most popular items is rather shady. The company also famously treats its warehouse workers terribly, and even the high-paid office workers sound like they develop PTSD at Amazon. Every tech company has its share of awful labour issues, but free overnight delivery of seemingly anything on the planet does have particularly gritty consequences.
But I digress. Yes, I plan on coughing up another £79 in a few months to renew my Amazon Prime membership. I don’t love myself for becoming tied up in this extremely well thought-out loyalty system. But I can’t say no to a deal — nor to unparalleled convenience.