Amazon Announces Date for 2nd Annual Prime Day Shopping Event

Additionally, there will be "countdown deals" in the run-up to Prime Day starting on July 5

Amazon announced it will host its second annual summer shopping event, known as Prime Day, on Tuesday, July 12.

The e-commerce giant debuted Prime Day last year on July 15 to celebrate Amazon's 20th anniversary. The one-day sale is exclusive for members of the online retailer's Prime subscription shopping service, which costs $99 a year for unlimited two-day shipping among other perks. The sale is opened to new and existing members in the United States, the United Kingdom, Spain, Japan, Italy, Germany, France, Canada, Belgium, and Austria.

This year's Prime Day will kick off at midnight PT (3 a.m. ET) and Amazon says it will launch new deals as often as every five minutes over the 24 hours of the sale. Overall, there will be more than 100,000 deals worldwide.

Additionally, there will be "countdown deals" in the run-up to Prime Day starting on July 5. U.S. Prime members will have access to "summer entertainment deals," including a 32-inch TV bundle with a Fire TV Stick for $120.

Amazon faced a backlash on social media during last year's Prime Day event — with the hashtag #PrimeDayFail trending — after many members complained about a lack of in-demand deals and items selling out too quickly.

In response, Amazon Prime Vice President Greg Greeley said the company has "dramatically increased the inventory behind many deals," for this years event and has nearly double the number of TV units in the U.S. "compared to Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined."

Amazon has also created a number of new tools for shoppers to find and track deals. Newly-enhanced deal shopping will help customers sort deals by category. Shoppers will be able to track specific deals and be notified when a deal is about to go live, a feature originally launched for Cyber Monday last year. Owners of an Amazon Echo, Echo Dot or Amazon Tap will benefit from "Alexa Specials." Amazon did not provide any further information on what those rewards may be.

CEO Jeff Bezos said in the company's annual letter to shareholders this year that he wants to make Amazon Prime indispensable.

"We want Prime to be such a good value, you’d be irresponsible not to be a member," Bezos wrote.

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