Hack 7 Take Amazon Anywhere


Amazon.com is just as on-the-move as you are, and you can access Amazon on your cell phone or PDA if you know where to look.

"Amazon Anywhere" refers to Amazon's system of providing service to alternate devices. Amazon wants their service to be available to any device that connects to the Internet. Beyond the standard web interface written with HTML, they offer their site in a variety of other formats for different devices like cell phones and PDAs. You can find a detailed description at http://www.amazon.com/anywhere.

The URL to visit Amazon.com via a mobile device is often already available via your cell/service provider's site. If you'd like to visit these directly, though, you can key in one of these URLs:

  • Cell phones: http://amazon.com/phone

  • PDAs: http://amazon.com/pocketpc or http://amazon.com/mypalm

If you don't have a WAP phone and you'd just like to get a sense of how the alternate site works, try a web-based WAP emulator. Yospace (http://www.yospace.com/spedemo.html) has a good emulator that can impersonate quite a few specific phones. Figure 1-13 shows how Amazon Anywhere appears on the Sony T68i emulator (and the T68i phone itself).

Figure 1-13. Yospace SmartPhone WAP emulator

Though it's a very simple interface, most of Amazon's features are present even in this lo-fi version. You can browse, search for, and buy products; you can also find product information, average customer review ratings, and purchase circles [Hack #44]. You also have access to all of Amazon's product lines including cell phones?which means you can buy your next cell from your current cell phone.