Amazon Says It Added 3M Prime Members In The Week Before Christmas

Amazon is famous for press releases devoid of actual information. (As we saw after Thanksgiving this month.) But, in a moment of selective truth-telling, the company just revealed that it signed up over three million members for its Prime program during the week before Christmas.

There are caveats, of course, as ever.

Amazon confirmed to Geekwire that this figure refers to new trial and paying members. So the actual number retained as ongoing, paying members may prove to be lower. (This is the case with over services that offer free trials, such as Apple Music.)

The company just gave a figure for the third week of December — which, in case you forgot, is right before Christmas — so we’re unable to gauge how much more popular the service was than a normal week. Offering free shipping is clearly most appealing during last-minute Christmas shopping time.

(Fwiw, last year, Amazon said it added 10 million new Prime members over the entire “holiday period.)

And finally, in typical Amazon fashion, there is no word on the total number of subscribers that the service has, although it was apparently a “record-breaking holiday season.”

“Amazon Prime membership continues to grow, and there are tens of millions of members worldwide,” the company added.

But the three million figure does give a small glimpse into the service’s popularity.

The $99 per year Prime service gives Amazon customers free-shipping for products, other shopping perks and access to its Prime video service.

Netflix, which rivals Amazon on the latter, has 69 million customers across 60 countries worldwide. Amazon Prime Video is only available in the U.S., UK, Austria, Germany and (recently added) Japan, however, though Prime membership services are supported in more countries.

That’s the most meaningful part of Amazon’s holiday announcement. Other carefully selected metrics — some of which include no actual, raw figures and therefore give little to no insight — include:

  • Nearly 70 percent of customers shopped using a mobile device this holiday — last year that was approaching 60 percent, but we don’t know how many went beyond browsing and actually bought items via mobile
  • Prime members made The Man in the High Castle the most watched TV season on Prime Video this holiday by 4.5x and doubled their total viewing hours of Prime Video titles, compared to 2014
  • Biggest holiday ever for Amazon Devices – up 2x over last year’s record-setting holiday
  • Over 200 million more items shipped for free with Prime this holiday season
  • Prime Now has busiest day ever on Christmas Eve
    • Amazon shipped to 185 countries this holiday