Is Amazon Prime on the top of your wishlist, but the $79 yearly fee is a bit too much to swallow all at once? Don’t worry; Amazon hears you, and is now offering a new way to pay for your membership – namely, a monthly fee of $7.99. In addition to making the service a bit more accessible to those who don’t want to pay for a full year all at once, this new pricing model puts Amazon squarely in the same pricing category as Netflix and Hulu – and Amazon’s streaming video library is starting to look just as competetive. The difference, however, is that Amazon also offers free two-day shipping and the ability to borrow books for free in the Kindle lending library.

This new pricing model is also great for those of you who only want Amazon Prime shipping benefits during the holiday shopping season. For example, if you only have Amazon Prime during November and December, you’ll only pay $15.98, saving you $63.02 over the course of a year.

However, if you do intend to use Amazon Prime year round, you’re still better off paying annually. You’ll end up saving $16.88 – just over two month’s worth if you pay by the month.

I’m currently going on my third year as an Amazon Prime member, and I don’t plan on cancelling my membership anytime soon. I use it to buy almost everything, from laptops to dog food. To me, the cost is well worth it; Amazon Prime really does end up paying for itself, and then some. And once Amazon’s Instant Video library gets a little more organized – and I’m able to use it on all of my Android devices – then I very well might even cancel my Netflix subscription.

What do you think of this new pricing model for Amazon Prime?

[Amazon via Engadget]