Amazon Dash is a consumer goods ordering service which uses a proprietary device for ordering goods over the Internet.
Amazon Dash consists of multiple components:
- the Amazon Dash scanning device, used to inventory consumer goods around the house, integrating with AmazonFresh;
- the Amazon Dash Button, a small tray-like consumer electronic device that can be placed around the house and programmed to order a consumer good such as disinfectant wipes or paper towels;
- the Amazon Dash Replenishment Service, which allows manufacturers to add a physical button or auto-detection capability to their devices to reorder supplies from Amazon when necessary.
The Amazon Dash Barcode Scanner was announced in April 2014, a Wi-Fi connected device that allows users to build a shopping list by scanning bar codes and saying product names out loud. It connects directly with AmazonFresh, the company's online grocery delivery service. The website for Amazon Dash highlights benefits such as "never forget an item again" and suggests users keep the device on the kitchen counter or refrigerator so that every member of the family can add items to its grocery list.
The Dash Button and Dash Replenishment Service (DRS) were introduced by Amazon.com on March 31, 2015. Due to the timing of the announcement, there were a number of news stories questioning whether the Dash Button was an early April Fools joke.
The Amazon Dash Button is a small electronic device designed to make ordering products easy and fast. The Dash buttons come in packs; each device contains an embedded button emblazoned with the name of an oft-ordered product. Users can configure each button to order a specific product and quantity, via the user's Amazon.com account, and mount the buttons, using adhesive tape or a plastic clip, to locations where they use the products. Pressing the button sends a Wi-Fi signal to the Amazon Shopping app, and orders new stock of whatever product the button is configured to order; the click also sends a message to the user's mobile phone, giving the user a half-hour to cancel.
Roll-out and response
Initially, the Dash buttons were made available by invitation to Amazon Prime members who were invited to request the devices. The devices received mixed reviews from critics and reporters upon release, and have been parodied online.
Amazon Dash Buttons initially partnered with more than 100 brands. The most popular Dash Buttons are the Tide, Bounty, and Cottonelle buttons.
In May 2016, Consumers' Research issued a notice that Amazon Dash was subject to hacker prank commands such as ordering pizza, tracking time, and controlling lights and outlets in households configured to respond to such commands. In response, Amazon introduced a technological fix in the form of an "Internet of Things Dash Button" which allows programmers to make programming modifications to the device. Consumer's Research noted that only skilled programmers are likely to be capable of making the modifications because of the programming languages used.
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