The best place to buy an Amazon Echo this Christmas isn’t Amazon.com – Quartz
If youâ€™re looking to get your hands on Amazonâ€™s hottest gadget, the Echo, before Christmas, you need to drive to a store. Thatâ€™s rightâ€”no free two-day delivery, no brown cardboard box, no drone flights. Brick and mortar, baby.
Due to an Amazon supply-chain â€œquirk,â€ the only place as of Monday to get an Echo is at one of Amazonâ€™s three physical stores, according to the Wall Street Journal. Amazonâ€™s stores are located in Seattle, Wa.; Portland, Ore.; and San Diego, Calif. The Echo and the smaller Echo Dot wonâ€™t be in stock on Amazon.com until after Christmas.
The company sees this not as a bug, but a feature, imploring customers to buy the device if they have the good fortune to encounter one in the wild.
â€œDue to demand, we encourage customers to purchase an Echo if they see it available,â€ an Amazon spokeswoman told WSJ.
(If youâ€™re really desperate, you can always pay up over at eBay, of course.)
The Echo has stormed the US market, surprisingly creating a new category of â€œsmart speakersâ€ since its late 2014 launch. An estimated 6 million homes in the US have an Amazon Echo, Dot, or Tap, according to Backchannel. â€œThe Alexa-enabled Echo is a true unicorn, one of those rare products that arrives every few years and fundamentally changes the way we live,â€ Backchannelâ€™s Jessi Hempel writes.
But if youâ€™re a West-coaster who wants a taste of that future, youâ€™ll have to make a 20th-century effort to get it.
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