Amazon’s latest take on e-commerce automation is making its public debut, just in case it wasn’t easy enough already to blow your budget on Amazon.com.
The company’s Dash Smart Shelf is a WiFi-enabled smart scale that can sense when items such as toilet paper, office supplies and pet food are running low, and automatically place an order to replenish the supply. Amazon said Thursday that it’s now available for $19.99 to home and business customers.
It was originally announced last year, without pricing details at the time. Amazon says the Dash Smart Shelf is now available for Amazon Business Customers, as originally expected. But in a new twist, home users can order them, too.
The shelf is an inch tall comes in three sizes: small (7” x 7”), medium (12” x 10”), and large (18” x 13”). Each size costs the same. It runs on AAA batteries or wall power using a separately purchased cable.
Amazon says the smart shelf works with thousands of products. People who don’t want the shelves to automatically reorder anything can instead have them send a notification when supplies are low.
It’s the latest evolution of Amazon’s Dash program. The company’s Dash Replenishment Service uses sensors in devices such as water pitchers and photocopiers to similar effect. Amazon previously discontinued sales of its physical Amazon Dash Buttons, which let people order new supplies by pressing them.
In the spirit of trying new things, I’ve just ordered two of the Dash Smart Shelves for my family. Never again will our cats go hungry, nor our butts unwiped. I’ll report back after we get a chance to try them.