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Inside Amazon (Feb 13th, 2018)

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The Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday that Amazon is gearing up to expand its Amazon Business marketplace to hospitals and clinics. The move would expand Amazon's presence in the medical supplies business. It's the latest foray into the healthcare space for the e-commerce retailer; in January, Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and J.P. Morgan Chase announced a plan to cut health costs and improve services for employees. Amazon is also reportedly interested in entering the multibillion-dollar pharmacy market. — WSJ

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Amazon's game streaming service Twitch now averages more viewers than some cable networks. About 962,000 people watch Twitch daily. Day viewership for MSNBC was about 885,000, and CNN was about 783,000 (Fox News and ESPN still lead the pack with around 1.5 million daytime viewers). Twitch is a free service, where people play games live on while other folks watch. Viewers can interact with the people playing and have the ability to tip the streamer with a virtual currency called "Bits." Amazon bought Twitch in 2014 for $970M. — BUSINESS INSIDER

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Vizio owners can now control their SmartCast TVs with Amazon Alexa. Users can turn the TV on and off using voice commands, and control things like volume, channel, and input. Users will also be able to use Alexa commands for controlling fast-forward, rewind, and pause. Customers will be able to use Alexa with Vizio’s 2017 and 2016 SmartCast P-Series, M-Series, and E-Series 4K models; support for 2018 Vizio SmartCast full HD and HD screens is expected to follow later this year. — THE VERGE

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Amazon Studios has renewed “Bosch” for a fifth season. "Bosch" is an Amazon-original police drama, created by executive producer Eric Overmyer which stars Titus Welliver in the titular role, and is produced by Red Arrow Studios’ Fabrik Entertainment. The show is Amazon's longest-running one-hour series, and the fifth season will be based on the novel "Angels Flight." — VARIETY

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More details have emerged about Amazon's mass layoffs at its Seattle headquarters. Amazon, the second largest US-based corporate employer, had more than 40,000 employees at its Seattle offices, and the layoffs are expected to be in the hundreds. The laid-off workers reportedly were told that their roles have been made redundant. The layoffs will come in waves and will be completed over the next few weeks. Some of the job cuts also come from Amazon’s subsidiaries including publishing arm Createspace and footwear seller Zappos. Amazon told the Seattle Times that it would be making "headcount adjustments across the company." — THE VERGE

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