Amazon Prime Day kicks off on June 21st this year

·Commerce Editor
·2 min read

Amazon has officially announced the dates for Prime Day 2021: the event will begin on 12AM PT on Monday, June 21 and conclude at 11:59PM PT on Tuesday, June 22. Like last year, Prime Day will be a 48-hour event, but unlike in 2020, this year's Prime Day will not signify the start of the holiday shopping season.

This year is a bit of a return to form for Amazon. The company held Prime Day in October last year, pushing the seasonal shopping frenzy forward by about one month. But that wasn't the original plan — Prime Day was usually held in the summertime, but challenges presented by the pandemic forced Amazon to push the two-day event back to the fall. But Prime Day returns to its typical summer time slot this year, giving Amazon a way to boost sales during a time that doesn't have as many shopping-focused holidays.

It also serves as a way to get additional signups for Amazon Prime, which stands at $13 monthly or $120 annual rate (that’s after a 30-day free trial). Prime Day sales are only available to Prime subscribers, so Amazon is hoping that more people will sign up for its service before the event. It's worth noting that free-trial subscribers are eligible for Prime Day discounts, so you could sign up and take advantage of Prime Day discounts before ever paying for the service.

Prime Day is a bit of a toss-up each year, but usually we'll see a handful of stand-out tech deals plus a number of smaller (but no less worthwhile) sales. Also, we've increasingly seen more counter and matching discounts offered Walmart and Best Buy and other retailers as they hope to capitalize on non-Prime members looking for similar deals, as well as those who simply don't want to participate in Amazon's shopping event.

Engadget will be covering Amazon Prime Day 2021, so check the site during the event to find the best tech deals that are worth your money — both from Amazon and other retailers. You can also follow our Engadget Deals Twitter account for real-time deal updates throughout Prime Day.