Amazon Launches New “OnStar for the Kindle Fire HD” (video)

Kindle Fire HDX MaydayAmazon is well-known for having the best customer service anywhere (usually) and today they showed us that even they can step up their game.The newest Kindle Fire tablets, which were just announced this morning, will include a new Mayday option on the menu bar. Select it and Amazon promises that within 15 seconds you will be talking to a customer support agent. You'll be able to see the agent, but they won't be able to see you.

“With the Mayday button, our goal is to revolutionize tech support,” said Jeff Bezos, Amazon.com Founder and CEO. “With a single tap, an Amazon expert will appear on your Fire HDX and can co-pilot you through any feature by drawing on your screen, walking you through how to do something yourself, or doing it for you—whatever works best. Mayday is available 24x7, 365 days a year, and it’s free.

This service of course requires a live internet connection, and it works something like this:

Pretty cool, but am I the only one who is a little discomforted by the possibility of seeing the person on the other end? I'm too used to not seeing the person when I'm talking on the phone or chatting online, so this option is going to feel a little weird.

About Nate Hoffelder (11590 Articles)
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader:"I've been into reading ebooks since forever, but I only got my first ereader in July 2007. Everything quickly spiraled out of control from there. Before I started this blog in January 2010 I covered ebooks, ebook readers, and digital publishing for about 2 years as a part of MobileRead Forums. It's a great community, and being a member is a joy. But I thought I could make something out of how I covered the news for MobileRead, so I started this blog."

10 Comments on Amazon Launches New “OnStar for the Kindle Fire HD” (video)

  1. It’s OnStar for tablets.
    The video feed is go reassure the user that they’re dealing with a live person, not an AI. 🙂

    • >The video feed is to reassure the user that they’re dealing with a live person, not an AI. 🙂

      How long before it will be one of those creepy Japanese animatronic girl-bots that you’re talking to? I bet there are programmers working on that cutsey head-tilting “Awww” thing right now!

  2. Man, they really are targeting these things toward grandmas, aren’t they.

    A better alternative to “mayday” is to just read the instructions.

    I hate that they’re touting this as a feature. It really adds nothing and will likely be used by only the dumbest of the dumb. If it works at all. What a waste.

  3. Wow – I hope you can disable that. I can just see me accidentally touching the screen at the wrong place and bringing up a real person all the time. I’d hate that.

    • Me too.

      I really hope there’s an option in settings that will block this feature, otherwise I will be calling them all the time. I am rather thumb fingered a lot of the time so I could see myself getting to know their tech support people quite well.

  4. People that use it will like it I think. My number one question was am I in India when I worked at Barnes and Nobles terrible customer service dept. Amazon as far as I know doesn’t route any of its kindle calls to India.

    • Amazon has been routing calls to India since 2005.

      • They route normal calls, not Kindle calls as far as I know. Their kindle team is US based. My husbands company (Whirlpool Corp) has been studying and visiting Amazon and Zappos because they are so efficient.

        (Off topic)
        OMG! Nate! You have an edit button now. Awesomeness!

  5. Neat, will there be a NSA backdoor too?

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