Walmart plans to take a page out of Amazon’s book and offer free shipping to subscribers who pay an annual fee. But Walmart’s service will be half the price of an Amazon Prime membership… and it also won’t include as many goodies.
For $99 per year Amazon Prime members get free 2-day shipping on many items, plus the ability to watch thousands of movies and TV shows, stream thousands of songs, and if they’ve got a Kindle device they can also borrow an eBook per month.
Walmart is just focusing on shipping: The Information reports (and the AP confirms) that Walmart customers will be able to pay $50 per year to get free shipping on more than a million items the retailer stocks. Those products will be delivered in 3 days or less.
The company does own online video service Vudu, but Walmart has no plans to bundle internet video streaming with its shipping subscription offering.
Walmart is expected to launch a limited beta of the program within weeks. Initially you’ll need an invitation to use Walmart’s $50 per year shipping service.