Amazon also created "channels" to benefit certain causes. In 2004, Amazon allowed customers to donate $5 to $200 to the campaigns of 2004 US presidential hopefuls, providing links that raised $300,000 for the candidates. Amazon has periodically reactivated a Red Cross donation channel after crises such as Hurricane Sandy, Hurricane Katrina, and the 2004 earthquake and tsunami in the Indian Ocean. By January 2005, nearly 200,000 people had donated over $15.7 million in the US.
On February 6, 2014, Amazon confirmed the acquisition of the gaming company Double Helix Games without any indication of the financial terms. The 75 Double Helix employees were to become Amazon employees and their Orange County, California, headquarters was to remain their operating base. Amazon informed the TechCrunch media company that it "acquired Double Helix as part of our [Amazon's] ongoing commitment to build innovative games for customers" and confirmed that Double Helix's current game roster and other future developments will receive support following the acquisition.
Prime Music is a Spotify/Google Play Music competitor that offer a library of millions of songs to Amazon Prime members at no added cost. Amazon Prime members can stream and download music for free. Prime has a collection of over 2 million songs available for download without advertisements. Consumers who need a larger music library can subscribe to Amazon Music Unlimited with over 10 million songs for $7.99 and $9.99 for non-Prime members.
“I think, effectively, you have a company that has conspired with about a billion consumers and technology to destroy brands,” argued Scott Galloway, a founder of business research firm now called Gartner L2 and a professor of marketing at New York University Stern School of Business, in a presentation last year. “Their attitude is that brands have, for a long time, earned an unearned price premium that screws consumers.”
Is it just us, or are housewarming gifts the most daunting Major Life Event gifts to buy? Presents for graduations or weddings or baby showers always seem to be easier to find, perhaps because the recipients are very clearly entering new stages that typically require something they don't currently own. Housewarmings aren't so straightforward. Your friend moving into her first-ever apartment is cause for a housewarming gift, but so is the time she moves into her tenth home. (What the heck do you get for her then?!) In an effort to make the shopping process less fraught, we've created a couple rules: 1. Go general, but still functional. Everyone appreciates a good wooden spoon, for example. 2. Only shop on Amazon. The site has everything, including glorious two-day shipping.
That’s according to new research by Consumer Intelligence Research Partners suggesting that in the past year, Prime memberships grew 8 percent — the lowest annual rate since the group began tracking the data in 2012. The group also put the number of U.S. Prime members — a statistic that Amazon has famously kept under wraps — at 97 million, with Prime shoppers spending an average of about $1,400 per year, compared with $600 per year for nonmember shoppers.
In 2005, Amazon announced the creation of Amazon Prime, a membership offering free two-day shipping within the contiguous United States on all eligible purchases for a flat annual fee of $79 (equivalent to $99 in 2017), as well as discounted one-day shipping rates. Amazon launched the program in Germany, Japan, and the United Kingdom in 2007; in France (as "Amazon Premium") in 2008, in Italy in 2011, in Canada in 2013, and in India on July 26, 2016.