Yesterday, 11:26 AM
- Amazon's (AMZN -0.5%) Alexa-enabled devices will get the ability to control Sonos sound systems through voice controls. General availability of the feature is scheduled for 2017. Amazon: "Our Amazon customers love listening to music. With Echo and Alexa, we combined that love of music with the ease of hands-free voice control, and today, music is one of the most-used features on Alexa-enabled devices. We're thrilled to collaborate with Sonos to combine the magic of Alexa with an incredible way to listen to music in every room in the home."
- Amazon is reportedly looking to offer an Alexa-exclusive music streaming service in addition to a product comparable to what Apple, Spotify and others already supply.
- Spotify Connect (Private:MUSIC) will also integrate into the Sonos ecosystem to provide functionality capable of controlling Sonos speakers through Spotify's app. The feature will be available via a beta program in October. Sonos: "Fifty percent of all Sonos households use Spotify. By tightly integrating the Spotify experience with the Sonos system, we've created an easier way for Sonos owners to get music out of their phones and playing all around their homes."
Yesterday, 10:16 AM
- There's more confirmation that consumers are doing the heavy lifting in the U.S. to prop up GDP while business investment falls short.
- "Consumer confidence improved in August to its highest level in nearly a year, after a marginal decline in July," noted The Conference Board director Lynn Franco.
- Some analysts think the slowdown in auto sales is freeing up some spending in other areas, although certain sectors that rely on foot traffic (restaurants, department stores) aren't necessarily seeing the bounce.
- Companies that line up neatly with millennial trends seem to be the ones making the outrageous gains in the retail sector. Ulta Salon (NASDAQ:ULTA), Domino's Pizza (NYSE:DPZ), Burlington Stores (NYSE:BURL), and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) come to mind -- with the four generating returns ranging from 40% to 60% over the last year.
- ETFs: XLY, XRT, VCR, RTH, RETL, FXD, FDIS, RCD, PEZ, PMR, PSCD, JHMC.
Mon, Aug. 29, 5:35 PM
- Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN): "At the more than 850,000-square-foot facility, hundreds and hundreds of Amazon employees will pick, pack and ship small items to customers such as books, electronics and consumer goods."
- Vice president of North America Operations, Akash Chauhan: "We place our fulfillment centers close to customers to provide the fastest possible delivery times, and the growth in Illinois is directly tied to our increasing customer demand. Illinois is a great state to do business, and we are happy to be expanding there to serve customers."
- The company is also reportedly planning to introduce a physical bookstore in the state.
Mon, Aug. 29, 3:41 AM
- New rules by the FAA go into effect today, clarifying what is acceptable commercial usage of small unmanned aerial vehicles.
- Drones must weigh less than 55 pounds, fly up to a maximum of 400 feet in altitude, at a speed of no more than 100 miles per hour and can only be operated during the day.
- According to industry estimates, the rules could generate more than $82B for the U.S. economy and create more than 100K new jobs over the next decade.
- Related stocks: AMBA, AMZN, AVAV, BA, DJI, OTCQX:DRNE, DPZ, HON, INVN, IXYS, GPRO, TRMB
Fri, Aug. 26, 11:28 AM
- Amazon (AMZN +1.2%) will reportedly open the location in the Lakeview neighborhood of Chicago next year.
- The company opened its first physical bookstore in Seattle last November, one in San Diego this summer and has another planned for Portland. Rumors of a New York store have also circulated.
- The brick-and-mortar spaces are intended to fully complement and integrate with Amazon's digital offerings.
Fri, Aug. 26, 10:03 AM
- Morgan Stanley analyst Brian Nowak restates an Overweight rating on Amazon (AMZN +0.5%), citing the company's continued extension into the automotive sector with the launch of Amazon Vehicles.
- Although Amazon presently does not offer buying or selling of vehicles, Nowak believes that could change in the future. He cites further that the new service is the second automotive development (on-demand Hyundai Elantra test drive delivery) the company announced this week.
- On TrueCar (TRUE +1.4%) he notes “a strong information research site on Amazon.com is a threat to traffic.” Further: “In addition, any further auto purchase integration (more partnerships like Hyundai, integrating dealerships into the platform, etc), combined with Amazon’s scale (~300+mn active shoppers vs TRUE’s 7mn monthly visitors), conversion expertise, and high customer loyalty (over 30mn US Prime members) would represent a direct threat to TRUE’s core business.”
- While eBay (EBAY +0.2%) actually facilitates buying and selling of vehicles, concern increases regarding the possibility of Amazon moving in a similar direction.
Thu, Aug. 25, 11:50 AM
- Amazon (AMZN +0.1%) earlier revealed a new research and community portal offering users access to specifications, photos, videos and reviews for thousands of new and used vehicle models.
- Though these businesses and Amazon's new service are not fully identical, the further extension of Amazon into the automotive arena does not bode well for them and others as it has the resources and technology to do what they do equally as well, if not better, and on a larger scale.
- TrueCar (TRUE -8.6%) is presently trading up around 100% on the year while Autobytel (ABTL -5%) is more or less unchanged (-2%).
- Amazon press release
- Amazon Vehicles
Thu, Aug. 25, 9:55 AM
- Research (specifications, photos, videos, reviews) is the primary goal of the initiative operating as an extension of Amazon Auto.
- Amazon (AMZN -0.2%) Director of Automotive, Adam Goetsch: “Our goal is to support customers during one of the most important, research-intensive purchases in their lives by helping them make informed decisions every step of the way. Amazon Vehicles is a great resource for customers who are interested in car information or looking for a broad selection of parts and accessories – all enhanced by the ability to tap into the knowledge, opinions, and experiences of other car owners within the Amazon customer community."
- Amazon Vehicles
- Press release
Tue, Aug. 23, 10:01 AM
- Amazon (AMZN +0.6%) is reportedly looking to launch a lower-priced service in addition to a $10 per-month offering similar to Spotify, Apple Music and others. Possible September launches for both are noted, though deals with labels and publishers have supposedly not been finalized.
- The price for the Echo-only service is said to be $4-$5 per month and would provide unlimited ad-free music, a notable difference from other low-cost streaming options with playback limitations.
- Prime Music is already available to Prime members.
- Samsung Electronics yesterday shut down a music-streaming service it launched in 2014 exclusive to its Galaxy product family.
Mon, Aug. 22, 4:49 PM
- Following reports earler this month Adam Selipsky was leaving Amazon's (NASDAQ:AMZN) AWS division, Tableau Software (NYSE:DATA) confirms he will take over the CEO role previously held by co-founder Christian Chabot.
- Chabot: "Adam is going to take Tableau to the next level. His experience in making AWS the world's leading cloud platform, his passion for servicing customers at a global scale, and his authentic team player attitude make him an extraordinary fit for Tableau. He is the right person to lead Tableau to the next stage of growth."
- Selipsky: "Tableau has that rare combination of a passionate customer base, leading products, amazingly talented people, dedication to technology innovation, and momentum in the market. The company is positioned to become the new world standard in analytics."
- Chabot will remain chairman of the company's board of directors.
Mon, Aug. 22, 9:03 AM
- Amazon Prime members in the Los Angeles area can have a Hyundai (OTC:HYMLF) Elantra brought to them for a test drive in a new promotion.
- It's one of the first attempts of the on-demand test drive concept in the U.S. and an intriguing push by Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) to see if it could shake things up in the automobile industry.
- The company is well-positioned to be used as a selling channel with 63M members now signed up for Prime.
- Last week, Hyundai announced that it would feature Amazon Alexa in its luxury Genesis model.
- Related auto stocks: GM, F, TM, FCAU, HMC, OTCPK:NSANY, TSLA, OTCPK:VLKAY, OTCPK:DDAIF, OTC:HYMLF, BAMXY, TTM, TSLA, AN, KMX, SONC.
- Hyundai press release
Fri, Aug. 19, 4:58 PM
- Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is streaming three shows it wants feedback on in helping to decide which one gets made into a full season.
- The company earlier this week uploaded pilot episodes of existing original series to Facebook and YouTube, the first time it has hosted content on external platforms, and last month announced it would produce two more seasons of its Catastrophe title.
Tue, Aug. 16, 5:52 PM
- Curse, "a leading global multimedia and technology company focused on content and products specifically for gamers," was founded in 2006 and counts 30M unique monthly visitors to its various properties.
- From the announcement: "Gamers count on Curse for the latest news and information, gaming-optimized voice comms, comprehensive databases and wikis, engaging communities, managing mods for their favorite games and their MCN Union for Gamers. Curse fosters the formation of communities and helps like-minded gamers around the world connect, compete, interact, and share information."
- Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
- Microsoft last week acquired live-streaming interactive gaming platform Beam in another recent move in the space.
- Twitch (NASDAQ:AMZN) blog post
Tue, Aug. 16, 4:08 PM
- A major announcement from Ford that it will develop a 100% autonomous vehicle in 2021 could have far-reaching implications in a variety of sectors.
- “The first application of the fully autonomous vehicle will be commercial applications, whether it’s ride-hailing or parcel delivery,” Ford CEO Mark Fields told Recode. Companies that could be eyeing the implication of purchasing self-driving car fleets include FedEx (NYSE:FDX), Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), UPS (NYSE:UPS), Domino's Pizza (NYSE:DPZ), and Papa John's International (NASDAQ:PZZA).
- There's also relevance on Ford's big bet on autonomy for Avis Budget Group (NASDAQ:CAR) and Hertz (NYSE:HTZ).
- The trucking and shipping sectors (ARCB, KNX, MRTN, CGI, YRCW, HTLD, UACL, SWFT) will also be monitoring how autonomous vehicle technology fits into the future.
- Previously: Ford to produce mass market autonomous vehicle (Aug. 16)
Tue, Aug. 16, 10:53 AM
- The episodes are viewable in their entirety and include The Man in the High Castle, Transparent, Bosch, Red Oaks and others.
- Marks the first time Amazon (AMZN -0.4%) has uploaded full episodes to external platforms in an apparent effort to highlight the company's original shows for viewers who may otherwise be outside of its Amazon Video base.
- Amazon last month announced it would produce two more seasons of its critically-acclaimed series Catastrophe.
Fri, Aug. 12, 5:20 PM
Amazon.com, Inc. provides online retail shopping services. It provides services to four primary customer sets: consumers, sellers, enterprises, and content creators. The company also provides other marketing and promotional services, such as online advertising and co-branded credit card... More
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