Amazon Using 30-Day Try-Before-You-Buy Offers To Attract Fire TV Customers

The 30-day trial invite that some Amazon users are receiving.

The 30-day trial invite that some Amazon users are receiving.

While the idea of free trial periods for streaming video subscription services like Amazon Prime is nothing new, the online retailer is now applying that same try-before-you-buy concept to streaming hardware.

GigaOm reports that some Amazon users have begun receiving e-mails with a 30-day free trial offer for the company’s recently launched Fire TV streaming box.

Users who accept the offer will get a Fire TV for a month free of charge. If they like it, they keep it and their credit card is charged the full $100 price. If they return it when the 30 days are over, they are never charged.

While the invites are account-specific, meaning only the Amazon customer who received it can take advantage of the trial, GigaOm’s Kif Leswing points out that one could just buy a Fire TV and then return it to Amazon for a refund. Of course, that’s the hallmark of one particular type of Bad Consumer, and it also means your credit card will carry the $100 charge until the refund is issued.

Back in April, our initial hands-on impression of the Fire TV was that it appeared to be slightly faster than other streaming devices, but it had yet to offer the wide range of third-party apps already available elsewhere. Its audio search was impressive and accurate, but we still question whether people will want to talk into the flimsy, easily lost remote control.