Weekend Wrap-Up: Amazon Moves Drone Testing to Canada, Unveils 'Dash' Order Button
Happy Easter, and welcome to the Amazon Wrap-Up! Seriously, though, Amazon news takes up half of our summary this week, as the company makes waves in the drone department as well as with a peculiar new gadget for buying things. Other companies in the headlines the past week: Google and Apple.
Shall we begin?
Amazon Moves Drone Testing to Canada
It’s no secret that Amazon has been wanting to more thoroughly test its delivery drones; unfortunately, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has been slow to clear Amazon for take-off. So Amazon’s done what it promised to do if the FAA continued at a snail-like pace: it took its testing to Canada, a mere 2,000 feet from the U.S. border. Canada’s regulations are a bit more lax than ours, and it seems Amazon is able to get approval for its drone designs more quickly there. Someday, when an Amazon drone is dropping off that new gizmo you ordered, you’ll have Canada to thank.
Amazon is a company with a lot of hits, but occasionally, it’ll put out something super weird (*cough*Echo*cough*). The latest entry into Amazon’s product circus is called the Dash, and its only job is to order you one specific thing from Amazon.com. The button connects to your home’s Wi-Fi network and your Amazon account, and, when pressed, will instantly process an order on Amazon using your account. For example: you could have a Dash button for your preferred brand of toilet paper in the bathroom, and when you see you’re running low, you can simply press the button to have Amazon send you a fresh supply. Dash is currently being tested with Prime members, with no word on a wider release.
Google Wants to Turn Your TV into a Chrome PC
Google’s Chromebooks have quietly caught on in recent years, and now the company is looking to extend the reach of its browser-focused operating system to TVs. Google introduced what it’s calling the “Chromebit” this past week — a stick that plugs into an HDMI port on your TV and works with Bluetooth peripherals to create a Chrome PC. The Chromebit will reportedly retail for around $100, and could serve as a great low-cost computing option for low-income households, as well as an easy-to-set-up device for the not-so-tech-savvy.
Apple’s $10,000 Watch Comes With a ‘Skip the Line’ Perk
Look, the $10,000 Apple Watch is ridiculous, and we all know it. There’s no way something that will inevitably be obsolete in one year, possibly two years, should have a $10,000 price tag. Buying the top-tier model will already have people thinking you’re an enormous tool, but just in case that wasn’t enough, Apple’s going to shine a spotlight on you and make your tool-ness indisputable. Buying the $10K “Edition” model of the Apple Watch will come with some special perks; for instance, being able to skip in line to pick up your Watch when it arrives (because that won’t make people hate you). You can also get courier service to have your Apple Watch hand-delivered to the Apple Store of your choosing. On the more practical side, the Edition Apple Watch comes with two years of 24/7 tech support. Which you’ll need when a mob of plebs beats you and breaks your new toy.