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Just days after reports surfaced that Walmart was ready to begin a national rollout of its Shipping Pass program, which is designed to compete with and undercut Amazon's Prime service, it now is being reported by USA Today that Walmart "is going to offer a free 30-day trial of its ShippingPass, good for unlimited two-day shipping. After the trial period, the price is $49 a year."

That's half the $99 annual membership cost of Prime.

Walmart previously had said it would cut its guaranteed delivery from three days to two, matching Amazon's promise.

In its analysis, the Washington Post writes that "Walmart will face no shortage of challenges in trying to lure shoppers to sign up for Shipping Pass. Prime debuted back in 2005, and analysts have estimated some 40 million Americans have memberships. In other words, many online shopping devotees have already become accustomed to turning to Amazon first, and they’ve made a habit of an unbundled approach to online ordering that Prime encourages, in which they might snap up a book one moment, only to follow with an order of paper towels several minutes later.

"So Walmart will have to persuade those people to jump ship for Shipping Pass, or cultivate a new group of shoppers to test the appeal of this kind of model."

Meanwhile, the challenge to prime's supremacy comes as Amazon has announced its 2016 "Prime Day" will be July 12, during which it hopes to replicate the success of the initial version last year, during which it offered limited specials only Prime members - and generated the sale of 34.4 million items.
KC's View:
I'm skeptical, but I'm a Prime guy ... not just for the shipping, but also for the other content advantages that it offers. In the end, Amazon may cost more, but people also may well judge it to be the more robust offering.