Amazon rolls out Geek Squad-style home services

Amazon has been quietly rolling out its own fix and installation service, a competitor of sorts to something like Best Buy's Geek Squad, according to a report from Recode out this morning.

The new "Amazon Smart Home Services Store" on its website allows users to book appointments for installations or free consultations. The service is meant to help customers set up their "smart home", a term used to describe devices like thermostats and smart speakers that can be controlled using apps and voice commands. Candidates must have "a curious mind and a desire to learn new technology, as the role will support a variety of products". The new offers began after the company saw a higher than average return rate for smart-home electronics and started the service in an attempt to lower those rates, according to Recode's Jason Del Ray. It also gives Echo tutorials, and educates shoppers on how to better leverage their Wi-Fi connections. Last month, the e-commerce giant wreaked havoc on rival grocery stores when it announced a $13.7 billion acquisition of Whole Foods, immediately confronting dozens of companies with the prospect of having to compete with food-delivery service Amazon Fresh.

The offering, which is already available in a bunch of West Coast markets, has been quietly rolled out to this point.


Shares of retailers were hammered Monday, as a wave of fears about the impact of juggernaut Amazon.com Inc. on the sector were highlighted in stories and commentary from analysts.

What's odd about this entire project is that Amazon already has a marketplace for handyman services like mounting TVs, cleaning carpets, and assembling furniture. The company also will provide technical and customer service training, and offers benefits, according to the job listing.

According the offering's home page, Amazon experts are available to consumers in Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, San Diego, L.A., Orange County and San Jose for the time being. The postings note that some of the preferred qualifications for these new in-home, geek squad-type jobs include work as an Apple Inc.


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