New subscription offerings are here and on their way: Netflix is working on an ad-supported plan with Microsoft, BMW launches a new heated seat subscription feature, Zygg e-bike service takes over Metro Vancouver, and Instagram continues to enhance its subscription beta testing. Despite unexpected June inflation, Amazon Prime Day boosts online retail shopping in the U.S.

Netflix partners with Microsoft for ad-backed subscription plan

The streaming service company has named Microsoft as a technology and sales partner to develop its lower-priced, ad-supported subscription plan. According to Netflix’s Chief Operating Officer, Greg Peters, this decision parts from innovation abilities and the strong privacy protections Microsoft offers. Read more on Reuters.

BMW launches heated seat subscription service

The luxury car manufacturer keeps adopting microtransactions for high-end features. After its launch in South Korea earlier this week, heated seats are now available in online stores in the UK, Germany, and South Africa. Drivers can warm up their front seats for $18 monthly, $180 a year, or get unlimited access for $415. Learn more on The Verge. 

Electric bike subscription launches in Vancouver

Zygg, an eclectic bike subscription service, continues to expand its offerings for personal and delivery cyclists across the Metro Vancouver area. Riders can choose their preferred e-bike to enjoy the service starting at a $49 weekly trial period, $149 monthly, or $99/month for yearly subscriptions. Read more on VancouverIsAwesome. 

Instagram expands creator subscriptions test features

Head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri, announced they’re adding several features to their subscription model alpha test. The initial rollout allowed subscriber-only stories, badges, and livestreams, and now, paying fans can access group chats, reels, posts, and exclusive content on creators’ profiles. Learn more on TechCrunch.

Amazon Prime Day pushes web sales up 8.5% in the U.S.

Online spending in the U.S. rose to $11.9 billion during Amazon’s Prime Day, helping lift traffic on competitors' sites like Walmart and Target. With more than 300 million items sold over two days and a $55.26 average order, best-selling products included diapers, beauty products, and Apple watches, while inflation-weary shoppers stocked up on household necessities. Read more on Bloomberg. 

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