Amazon Killed the Dash Button and Blamed Alexa

Dash Tide Button
Amazon

If you’re a fan of Amazon Dash Buttons, then prepare yourself for bad news. Amazon ordered a swift death to Dash Buttons, and it came with prime shipping—Amazon says Dash Buttons aren’t needed thanks to Alexa shopping.

Amazon Dash Buttons were always a curiosity. For $5, Amazon would send you a branded button (like Tide or Glad) to stick on your refrigerator, washing machine, or other convenient location. Pressing the button would automatically order a set product at today’s prices, and your first order was $5 off, making the button essentially free. If it were a Tide button, you’d get Tide Laundry detergent; a Glad Button ordered trash bags, and so on. The downside was if the cost of Tide increased without warning you wouldn’t know.

It didn’t take long for people to hack the buttons either; it wasn’t difficult to intercept the Dash Button signal and repurpose it. Enterprising users reconfigured Dash Buttons to send text messages, control smart devices, order pizza and more. Amazon even took notice and start selling an official IOT Button, albeit at a higher cost and with less capability.

Physical Dash Buttons are no more though. Amazon confirmed in a statement that it will no longer sell the buttons. Existing buttons will continue to be supported, and virtual buttons are still available through your Amazon account, but if your physical Dash Button dies that’s it.

IOT Buttons are still available to purchase, however. Amazon gave several reasons for the move, including the increasing use of Alexa Shopping.

In a statement, Amazon explains:

Since the introduction of the Dash program, we’ve continued to work on making the shopping experience convenient and easy, and in some cases, even disappear for customers. With Dash Replenishment, we’ve launched hundreds of devices globally that automatically reorder essentials so customers don’t have to think at all about restocking. And we introduced virtual Dash Buttons, which are available digitally — whether online, in the Amazon App, through screened devices like Echo Show or on third party devices. We’ve also seen customers increasingly using programs like Alexa Shopping, which provides a hands free shopping experience, and Subscribe & Save, which lets customers automatically receive their favorite items every month. With this in mind, we’ve decided to shift the Dash program focus — as of February 28, Dash Button devices are no longer available for purchase on Amazon globally. Existing Dash Button customers can continue to use their Dash Button devices. We look forward to continuing support for our customers’ shopping needs, including growing our Dash Replenishment product line-up

What Amazon isn’t mentioning is that Germany ruled the Dash Buttons illegal just last month. While Amazon had promised to fight the ruling, it would seem that’s unnecessary now.

via GeekWire

Josh Hendrickson Josh Hendrickson
Josh Hendrickson has worked in IT for nearly a decade, with nearly half of that spend doing Q/A, project management, and system administration for IDM Computer Solutions, which develops the popular UltraEdit text editor. Josh spent another four years in computer service and repair. A former Microsoft employee, Josh now writes much of How-To Geek’s Windows content. He’s also a smarthome enthusiast who's even built his own smart mirror with just a frame, some electronics, a Raspberry Pi, and some open-source code. Read Full Bio »

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