Teens get their own Amazon accounts (if their parents let them)

Ben Fox Rubin  CNET

Ben Fox Rubin CNET

To get the ball rolling, parents must enter their kids' contact information, and indicate which of their payment cards is to be used for purchases.

Teen logins allow teens to shop on their own and parents approve the order with a simple text. "We've listened to families and have built a great experience for both teens and parents", said Michael Carr, vice president, Amazon Households. And some teen retailers have filed for bankruptcy protection, including Aeropostale and Wet Seal. They can also take advantage of a six-month free trial before the monthly payments kick in.

"Teenagers are at least as comfortable buying things online as their parents are, so it makes sense to go after them directly", said Jan Dawson, chief analyst at technology research and advisory firm Jackdaw. This means that a parent with a Prime account can share the benefits that come with it with their children.

Amazon Prime Student offers college deals and exclusive promotions. Among other teen favorites: Nike, with 6 percent of the vote, and American Eagle, with 5 percent. And the option to enroll in the program on a monthly basis eliminates the need for cash-strapped students to have to commit to the full-year Amazon Prime membership if they don't want to. Parents can either sign up their teen, or a teen can send an invitation to mom or dad via SMS or email. Parents then approve or deny the order, though the system can be set to automatically approve orders if desired.

However, even in the cases where teens are allowed to place their own orders, parents can receive itemized notifications for every order and they're able to cancel or return items, as usual.

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