Amazon’s Mayday Sets A New Customer Service Standard

September 27, 2013   |   by Chris Kalaboukis

One of the coolest things to come out of Amazon in a long time is not a new set of Kindle Fire tablets, although those are cool, its just upping the hardware specs and lowering the price, which if you ask me is not very innovative. Kind of how I feel about the iPhone 5S & C.

What’s really cool about the new Kindle Fire HDX is the new Mayday service, which calls for immediate video help for your tablet. Not only does the service operate 24/7, tapping the Mayday button give you the option to talk to someone who can help you with your device in a small video window. The rep can hear you, see the screen of the device, control the device and draw on the interface, allowing them to virtually assist you with any questions on usage that you might have. It is actually less of a virtual Genius bar than it is remote video help.

One of the privacy features is that while you can see them, they can’t see you. They can however see the screen of your device, so make sure not to have or bring up any, ahem, inappropriate images (or video, I’d guess) while you are talking to them. (I can see issues if you happen to have something like that on the screen and accidentally hit the Mayday button – oops!).

I think this is a very cool and innovative approach – a great way to finally pull together a bunch of preexisting technologies and present/use them in a simple way. Kind of like what Steve Jobs did with the iPod.

I can see beyond the Kindle Fire tablets though – wouldn’t it be cool if Amazon licensed this technology to other tablets vendors as well, or even to other app developers? Imagine getting stuck on any device or app and being able to call up immediate tech support like this for any app on any device. Now that’s interesting, and not out of the question: imagine AWS for customer service….

Mayday is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. It is accessed by a dedicated button found right in the tablet’s Quick Settings menu. A tap on that button connects the user with a live support representative in 15 seconds or less, no matter what time or day of the year it is. Once connected, the user can see the support representative in a small window on their screen, and the representative can see whatever app or screen is on the user’s tablet (Amazon was sure to point out to us that while you can see the rep, they can’t see you). Support techs can guide users with visual cues and auditory prompts, and if those fail, they can even control the tablet remotely to resolve the issue.

via Amazon launches Mayday, a virtual Genius Bar for the Kindle Fire HDX | The Verge.

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