Amazon’s ‘Project Iliad’ Made It Harder to Cancel Prime: Leaked Data

  • Amazon deliberately built it more durable to cancel Prime memberships with a venture code-named “Iliad.” 
  • The venture created many layers of queries and new delivers just before a person could terminate Key.
  • Immediately after the program launched, cancellations dropped by 14% in 2017, internal files demonstrate.

Amazon intentionally drew out the course of action of canceling a Prime membership under a task code-named “Iliad,” in accordance to inside paperwork obtained by Insider. 

The undertaking created multiple levels of inquiries and new delivers in advance of a Key member could terminate their membership in hopes of lessening member churn. Right after the project’s start, the selection of Prime cancellations dropped by 14% at just one issue in 2017 as much less users navigated to the closing cancellation site, one of the documents explained. 

The multistep cancellation method — a version of which remains energetic — is just 1 instance of refined user-encounter style possibilities Amazon has utilized to complicate or confuse Prime’s subscription and cancellation processes. 

In recent many years, various grievances have been filed with the Federal Trade Commission asking for an investigation into Amazon Prime’s cancellation approach and its use of so-called “darkish styles.”

“In the course of the approach, Amazon manipulates end users by way of wording and graphic layout, making the course of action needlessly tough and irritating to recognize,” the Norwegian Client Council explained in describing its conclusions in January 2021.

In an e mail to Insider, an Amazon spokesperson stated the indication-up and cancellation processes for Primary are “easy and transparent and plainly present buyers with options and the implications of those people possibilities.”

“Client transparency and believe in are best priorities for us,” Jamil Ghani, vice president of Amazon Key, explained in a assertion. “By design, we make it clear and uncomplicated for prospects to both of those indicator up for or terminate their Key membership. We regularly listen to purchaser feedback and glance for techniques to strengthen the shopper practical experience.”

What it normally takes to cancel an Amazon Primary subscription now

Though the multistep process isn’t really fairly as tough to total as the 500-page historic Greek epic poem of Task Iliad’s namesake, canceling a Prime subscription does choose several clicks, decisions, and confirmations. 

The “conclude membership” button can be discovered under the “handle membership” tab, which then sales opportunities to a series of prompts and features. 

The first prompt says “will not give up on movie night time” and flags to end users how quite a few days are remaining until eventually the following billing cycle. 

Amazon mobile app screenshot

A screenshot of the Amazon cellular app.

Hannah Towey/Insider

The future prompt allows users know how a great deal funds they would preserve by switching from a regular to an yearly payment strategy. Starting February 18, Amazon’s once-a-year Primary membership payment elevated from $119 to $139, and the monthly fees enhanced from $13 to $15.

Amazon mobile app screenshot

A screenshot of the Amazon mobile application.

Hannah Towey/Insider

The past prompt asks customers to verify the cancellation of their membership. The 1st three yellow buttons on the page offer you to pause or hold the membership or be reminded later. 

Farther down the web site are two final yellow buttons listing alternatives to terminate or pause the membership. 

Amazon mobile app screenshot

A screenshot of the Amazon cellular application.

Hannah Towey/Insider


Candice Cearley

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