Amazon Expands Its 'Geek Squad' Rival To Help Customers Setup Smart Home Devices
If you read HotHardware, and judging by your eyes reading this text, you do, you're probably well versed enough in tech to have no problem setting up your new digital devices. We're not just talking about simple things like televisions, but anything relating to the booming IoT industry: digital assistants, thermostats, power monitoring, and so on and so forth.
It might be hard to appreciate sometimes, but much of the world is not as well versed in tech as diehard enthusiasts, so what might seem simple to you might look outright baffling to someone not immersed in tech all day. It appears Amazon knows this reality well, as it's hiring its own in-house experts to aide those who don't mind shelling out for professional help.
This is an interesting move, because Amazon has long enabled third-parties the ability to sell installation services, but with Amazon itself getting into this game, it exemplifies the importance of getting help to those who need it. Some, after all, might hold off on a purchase of an Alexa-enabled product, for fear that setting it up will prove too complicated. Amazon simply can't have that; especially when Best Buy would happily take those customers away with its nationwide Geek Squad service.
Of course, not all tech gadgets are hard to setup, and Amazon's Echo is an example of a device that no one should have issues with, but things get more complicated when we're talking about other devices that will be setup around the house, such as smart thermostats and other all-encompassing solutions that allow folks to manage many aspects of their home from their smartphone, or even with their voice.
Want to get pro help for setting up an Ecobee4 thermostat? Amazon will charge you $99, although for the launch of the service this week, many such fees have been slashed by 20%. Also notable is the fact that Amazon is also offering "Alexa Smart Home Consultations", which are 45 minute sessions that allow an Amazon expert to answer any and all of your questions, as well as figure out exactly which smart products you need - all of which can be purchased on Amazon (of course!).