Alexa, what does physical store online shopping control mean?

Extra, extra! Amazon buys Whole Foods… Oh wait, you already know that.

But have you realised that Amazon first killed the old good brick and mortar retail experience, only to get back to brick and mortar? Oh, I see, you are quite aware about it.

Then maybe you already know about this patent by Amazon with a method to prevent you from comparison shopping while you’re in its stores:

Abstract: Systems and methods for controlling online shopping within a physical store or retailer location are provided. A wireless network connection may be provided to a consumer device at a retailer location on behalf of a retailer, and content requested by the consumer device via the wireless network connection may be identified. Based upon an evaluation of the identified content, a determination may be made that the consumer device is attempting to access information associated with a competitor of the retailer or an item offered for sale by the retailer. At least one control action may then be directed based upon the determination.

There was a time when “search, compare, and if you find something better, buy it”, was a turnaround. The internet came with the promise of a perfect market, where such visionary adage was going to be the new normal. But that was only a flash in the pan, until the new lords of the internet decided enough was enough.

The new adage is “don’t search, don’t compare, don’t even try. We know better than you what you need…” In other words, you can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.

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