Amazon Prime launches in Australia, but shoppers won’t see same-day delivery

Amazon TV streaming launches in Australia.

Other markets, especially the U.S., have plenty more features included in Prime memberships, such as the aforementioned same-day delivery, access to Prime Music, Kindle Unlimited and Prime Photos, early access to Amazon's Lightning Deals and much more.

Amazon will likely be hoping that the Australian launch of Prime will help temper some of the recent criticism the shopping giant has faced locally.

Amazon's introduction of Prime only seven months after it launched its local website was far quicker than in other markets, and indicated a "certain level of ambition here", said Amitabh Mall, a senior partner and leader of Boston Consulting Group's Australian and New Zealand consumer practice.

As part of the membership, customers will also have access to the company's streaming service Amazon Prime Video; Amazon Prime Reading; gaming platform Twitch Prime; Prime Day shopping deals; and Alexa shopping, allowing shopping via voice on Alexa-enabled devices.

However, Prime in Australia only offers free two-day business delivery, whereas you can get free same-day or next day delivery in the US for some items on Amazon.

This is significantly less than the $119 fee for Amazon Prime in the US.

Prime is already available in several countries and has 100 million members.

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Prime is Amazon's membership program that promises free delivery on some items, and two business day delivery to customers in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Hobart, Melbourne, Perth, and Sydney, and regional cities such as Albury-Wodonga, Bendigo, Gold Coast, Gosford, Newcastle, Shepparton-Mooroopna, Toowoomba, and Wagga Wagga.

Citi retail analyst Bryan Raymond said Amazon Australia still offered only a "patchy" range of well-known brands being sold directly by Amazon, and that increasing that would be key to growing its penetration here.

With its Australian operations in full swing, Amazon announced a new fulfilment centre earlier this month, slated for launch in the second half of 2018.

Prime starts here with a 30-day free trial, then $6.99 a month, or save 30% with an annual payment of $59.

What do Australian Prime members get?

There is no minimum purchase to qualify for free delivery, however, it is only available on "Prime-eligible" products.

Amazon Prime's Vice President Jamil Ghani hinted that the launch of the new service may help those reeling from the government's newly introduced GST levy on importing worldwide products.

Prime expedited delivery reaches almost 90% of Australians in two business days, with more cities, towns and suburbs being added over time.

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