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Inside Amazon (Feb 9th, 2018)

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Amazon plans to launch its own delivery service for businesses. "Shipping with Amazon" would offer a challenge to FedEx and UPS. It would pick up packages from businesses and then deliver them to customers. The company plans to launch the business with third-party merchants who sell goods on its web site, in Los Angeles next month. After Los Angeles, Amazon plans to roll out the service to other large cities. — CNBC

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Amazon Music listeners can now build playlists using Alexa voice commands. Listeners can use an Alexa-enabled device to add a song to a playlist or start a new playlist from scratch. Most other devices with voice control, like Spotify and Apple Music, let users request songs, artists, albums or radio stations, but do not allow users to build a playlist. The playlist feature debuts today on Prime Music and Amazon Music Unlimited users. It walso works on any device with Alexa. — THE VERGE

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Amazon is planning to lease a warehouse just outside Sao Paulo, Brazil. The company is making a big push in Latin America and has targeted Brazil, the largest retail market. The new warehouse will be 50,000 square meters and four times the size of the current book-shipping warehouse in the country. The size of the warehouse could be an indicator that Amazon plans to distribute electronics and other goods from the warehouse. — CNBC

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Amazon is offering tours of its fulfillment centers in seven cities across the United States. The behind-the-scenes look will offer people a glimpse of where items shipped within two days actually come from. The tours will take place in Chattanooga, Tennessee; San Bernardino, California; Chester, Virginia; Jeffersonville, Indiana; Phoenix; Robbinsville, New Jersey; and Dallas. The tour lasts 60 minutes and is available to anyone ages 6 and up. People can register online. Amazon has faced criticism recently about the level of pay for warehouse workers and whether the centers boost the overall economy of the communities where they are built. — DIGITAL TRENDS

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A+E Networks president and CEO Nancy Dubuc has taken herself out of the running to replace former Amazon Studios head Roy Price. Amazon’s exhaustive hiring process has been regarded as a potential deterrent to Hollywood candidates. Some have speculated that the level of compensation and a lack of perks that Hollywood executives are accustomed to have been factors in not finding a replacement. Price resigned in October amid accusations of harassment. — DEADLINE

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