Amazons Unveils 'TextBuyIt'
Jarrett Martineau | April 1, 2008 at 08:18 pmby
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SEATTLE — Amazon.com's brick-and-mortar competitors have yet another reason to fear the Web: a new service that lets shoppers compare prices and buy things with a few quick taps on their cellphones.
Amazon TextBuyIt, which launched late Tuesday, lets people text the name of a product, its description or its UPC or ISBN to 262966 (that's "Amazon" on the keypad) from anywhere their cellphones work — including from inside physical stores.
If Amazon stocks matching items, the service returns two results at a time. Shoppers can immediately buy one of the first two the selections by texting back the number "1" or "2," or they can ask for more by texting the letter "M."
New TextBuyIt customers will be prompted to enter the e-mail address associated with their existing Amazon account plus a shipping zip code. The service then calls them and walks through the checkout process using an automated voice system. Shoppers get confirmation by text message and e-mail.