The $12.99-per month or $99-per-year prime service offers users added perks like low prices and faster delivery for certain purchases and shipped over 5 billion items worldwide last year.
The move vastly expands the number of people now eligible for that discounted rate, with about 35 million American adults enrolled in Medicaid, the public health insurance program for people with low income. They can renew their discounted Amazon Prime membership every year, for up to four years, and can cancel anytime.More news: Watch a hotel rip Trump's name off its sign
The discount is substantial: Amazon asks these lower-income customers to pay $6 a month.
This expansion of discounted Prime membership is a direct assault on rival Walmart's traditional stronghold. More than 42 million participate in the food stamps program, through what is now called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. Amazon Prime customers typically spend more and buy more frequently on Amazon than non-members do. Amazon doesn't say how many Prime customers it has, but market research company Forrester Research says that the majority of American households with annual income over $100,000 already pay for a Prime subscription.
The goal of these discounts, according to Amazon executive Aaron Perrine, is to give more people access to "aspects of the digital economy - some conveniences and benefits - that I think a lot of us take for granted".More news: Seahawks trade another star amid Richard Sherman confusion
Regardless of the larger retail battles being waged, are cheaper $5.99 Amazon memberships actually a good deal for poor people?
The Prime members will still receive benefits of full paying members such as Prime Video, Music, Photos, Reading, Audible channels, Prime Now, and even free same-day and one-day shipping.
Students can also get a discount on Prime. Her youngest son has a rare genetic disorder that prevents her from working full time and makes going to the store more hard.More news: Trump says he'll counteract any Russian Federation meddling in midterms
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