With all of the tablet users in abundance these days, it is no wonder that one of the major tech companies would come up with a “Mayday Button.”
And Amazon has done just that.
It doesn’t take long to navigate the internet to see how many people are asking questions in blogs and forums about what to do when my tablet does this, or how to do that or what happens if I break my iPad. Just last week I saw a video on YouTube of a news story of a 80 year old woman who is absolutely in love with her tablet because it allows her to do all of her daily reading for a fraction of the price.
However, this user did struggle with the basic operations of the tablet, as her Apple iPad did not come with any instructions. So Amazon set out to create the Mayday Button to offer live tech-support to help new users with their learning curve with the tablet.
In the past, many tablet users would resort to heading over to sites such as Yahoo Answers, or even Twitter to get support for their tech devices. After all, we all know that communicating with a company directly in order to get resolve to our questions takes way too long, or we may not even hear back from them. In our current, fast food nation a la “we want the answers now” attention span, the new Mayday Button is a great tweak to an already popular Amazon Kindle Tablet.
The newly appointed “Amazon Tech Advisor” support is standard on the Kindle Fire HDX. Earlier in October 2013, Amazon released its new line featuring a 7-inch and 8.9-inch screen models. They are priced at $229 and $379 respectively (see explanation on costs below in article). And with this type of immediate support from a professional tech advisor, Amazon expects the device to take off, especially with a continually older user base.
After reading some of the forums and what users expect from the Mayday button Tech support function, it is clear that people are expecting Amazon to get rid of the support due to shenanigans and lewd behavior that could occur between the users and the support staff. However, Amazon has creatively thought of a way to minimize inappropriate exchanges between both parties:
- The Amazon Tech Advisor can only hear the user; whereas the tablet consumer can see and hear the tech support.
- Amazon has placed a disclaimer that the Mayday support sessions may be recorded.
How does the Mayday Button work?
You can connect with the tech advisor staff at Amazon by clicking the Mayday Button right on the Kindle home screen. Current typical wait times to connect to an advisor are less than 1 minute. Once connected with an agent, he or she is logged into your screen and can draw on the screen with circles, arrows, lines, or even click through the pages to guide you how to use the tablet.
The process is seamless and even the least tech savvy individuals should find using the mayday function relatively easy.
How Much Does Using the Mayday Button Cost?
There is no cost of using the added tech support for the Kindle Fire HDX. In fact, I was surprised to learn from a Huffington Post article that Jeff Bezos, the founder and CEO of Amazon, has claimed that the Kindle’s are offered to consumers at cost, rather than at a typical markup. Amazon then makes money from what people will go back and buy for their Kindles such as books, apps, and articles.
Though slightly different that Apple’s model for income from their device sales, there are a lot of similarities. Just like users can purchase apps and music and movies, the majority of Amazon’s profits will come from downloads, not from the tablet itself. After all, the Kindle was created for the sole purpose of its users to download the millions of titles from Amazon.
However, Amazon will set itself apart from other tablet companies (Asus, Samsung, and Apple) because by having well trained tech advisors, they will be able to help consumers learn and get excited about the Kindle, thus allowing them to be able to use it more and most likely generate more purchases for Amazon in the end.
Think of how many app and video or music sales Apple must lose due to user confusion. I am sure it is millions of dollars annually.
With an apparent targeted marketing strategy, you can expect Amazon to sell tons of the new Kindle Fire HDX simply because of the Mayday Button. For consumers who want a tablet, but feel they are not very tech savvy, the HDX will not only be a less expensive option than the competitors’ tablets, but the Mayday Button will give users the security of getting the most out of their investment.
The addition of the Mayday function can be turned off. But since it is free, Amazon does not expect many users to do so.
To date, the Kindle sales are about 1/20th of all tablet sales whereas Apple still dominates about half of the market. Amazon hopes that the addition of Mayday will encourage new tablet buyers to embrace the free tech support and increase the current market share for Amazon.
So what will Apple and its iPad do to follow? We’re not sure, but it probably won’t take long for the tech behemoth to answer. For now, Apple’s users will have to resort to third party iPad tutorials like iPad Training to proactively learn the tablet prior to having questions on the spot.