Amazon’s new Explore platform offers virtual experiences from around the world to explore a new place, learn a new skill, or shop at unique boutiques.
The new platform connects you with one-on-one sessions with an instructor, tour guide, or personal shopper to virtually provide you a personalized and unique experience.
Some of the sessions you can book include an intro to style class, virtually visiting Prague, a wine tasting, a carbonara cooking session, a virtual walking tour of Hong Kong, and more. During each session, you can purchase items from your host for sale in a shop or available on the street if you have a virtual walking experience.
Amazon says that since the experiences are one-on-one, you can ask your guide to tailor the experience to you and what you want to see or learn. The video is also one way, so while you can talk to your host, they can’t see you.
Session range from 30-75 minutes, with prices starting at $10 and going all the way up to more than $200. You’ll need a laptop or desktop computer with a microphone, and an updated browser for Amazon Explore experiences to work.
Right now, Amazon Explore is available only by invitation only, so if you see an experience you are interested in, you have to request to sign up for it.
Amazon is most likely utilizing more people staying at home during the coronavirus pandemic who have run out of puzzles, banana bread, and binge-watched shows to keep them busy.
Airbnb has a similar experience platform that they adapted for the coronavirus pandemic. In April, the company shifted its Experiences services to the web instead of face-to-face sessions to give people stuck at home more options for things to do during their downtime, while at the same time enabling the experience providers to keep on earning.
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