Amazon launches Prime service in Singapore five months after entering Asia

Amazon launches Prime membership in Singapore amid SE Asia push; stops free shipping option

Members will enjoy a host of facilities, including access to video streaming and free gaming services such as Twitch Prime.

This is an interesting move by Amazon as they're clearly targeting some 600 million Singapore residents, but they still don't have their own Amazon country site.

To encourage sign ups the Singapore Prime membership advertised at $8.99 per month will be reduced to $2.99 for a limited time, although Amazon haven't yet indicated how long the discount will last.

This follows news that the American e-commerce giant has ended its FREE AmazonGlobal Saver Shipping service yesterday, 5 December.

However, this does mean the previously free Prime Now service is gone, and users will have to subscribe to Prime if they even want to make a purchase locally, unlike local rivals Redmart and Honestbee, which do not require a subscription to order products such as diapers or groceries.

But take note, Amazon will also have similar delivery times for some of its Handmade items as many are listed as taking a number of days to create and so aren't available for fast delivery.

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The launch of this service here is due to the strong response and adoption of the Prime Now app in the past few months.

This is especially true when it comes to handmade gifts bought on Amazon as the company said that it will ship handmade, local goods in select markets as part of Prime Now, which offers a one- and two-hour delivery service.

"Amazon's dominance in retail has been the primary focus of retail executives, investors and board members - yet, the solution to steal back both market share and consumers' loyalty have evaded most traditional retail brands", said Michael Osborne, CEO of SmarterHQ, in a press release.

Speaking to The Straits Times, Amazon Prime International's vice president Jamil Ghani noted that the Prime membership is country-specific and not transferable at all - those who already have US Prime memberships can not convert them to local ones, and vice versa.

The launch of Amazon Prime comes just after the company ended its Free AmazonGlobal Saver Shipping option to Singapore on Monday, which enabled shoppers here to get free global shipping with a minimum order of US$125.

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