In December 2016, the first Amazon Go store was opened to Amazon employees in Seattle. The 1,800 sq ft store uses a variety of sensors and automatically charges a shopper's Amazon account when they walk out of the store. It stocks ready-made meals and meal boxes; in addition to a full grocery store. The store was planned to open for the general public in early 2017 but it has not done so due to issues with the technology tracking over twenty people at one time. The store opened to the public on January 22, 2018.
Another potential growth area for Amazon is it advertising business. The company is expected to grab 4.1% of the total domestic digital ad spend this year to move into third-place behind Google (GOOGL - Free Report) and Facebook (FB - Free Report) , according to an eMarketer report. Amazon only claims a tiny percentage of ad dollars compared to its peers, but the e-commerce firm is projected to see its share of U.S. digital ad spending climb to 7% by 2020 to hit $10.92 billion.
Prime’s approaching a saturation point may be inevitable, but that doesn’t mean that memberships should already be described as “flattening out,” said Charlie O’Shea, lead retail analyst for Moody’s. O’Shea noted that, hypothetically, it’s possible for a company to grow at 10 percent, then slip to 9 percent, and still be adding more members in absolute numbers.
And while Amazon’s brands have quickly gained market share on its platform in some areas, in other segments, such as apparel, they account for less than 1 percent of the inventory sold. And when broadened out to include brick-and-mortar stores, its online share of the battery market equals less than 5 percent. Until Amazon’s share of the total market starts to reach closer to 40 percent or more, it is difficult to argue there is an attempted-monopolization case, say legal experts.
In October 2016, Amazon Music released a music streaming service called "Amazon Music Unlimited." Unlike Prime Music with its somewhat limited catalog, this stand-alone music streaming service has "tens of millions" of songs and is intended to compete with music streaming leaders such as Spotify and Pandora Radio. It has a similar price structure, albeit with a $2/month discount for Amazon Prime members.
In 2012, Amazon announced the launch of Vine.com for buying green products, including groceries, household items, and apparel. It is part of Quidsi, the company that Amazon bought in 2010 that also runs the sites Diapers.com (baby), Wag.com (pets), and YoYo.com (toys). Amazon also owns other e-commerce sites like Shopbop.com, Woot.com, and Zappos.com.