The latest version of the Amazon iPhone app (1.2.8) connects the offline world to online sales like never before by offering a camera based barcode scanner similar to those available on popular price comparison apps like Red Laser. The new Amazon app supports a more integrated offline-to-online shopping experience by supporting purchases directly inside the app and the ability to add items to your wish list for later purchase.
If you’re selling on Amazon, this is good news for you because you’re more likely to connect with potential customers as they engage with the real world. If you’re a brick-and-mortar retailer, you’re probably cringing at the thought of your customers scanning your products and then making the purchase with your competitor right there in your store. Ouch.
My favorite quote about the new app came from an article on CNet where Jessica Dolcourt quoted one of her colleges as saying “Amazon just made the world its showroom.”
This isn’t too far from the truth. The way we look at purchasing will significantly change as the products we encounter in everyday life become instantly available for purchase at our finger tips.
Currently, the barcode feature is not available for use with iPod touch. Amazon mobile is free and for use on iPhone 4 and 3GS running iOS 4.