Forget drones, Amazon wants to use own cargo planes to improve shipping operation

amazon in talks to lease more jets get packages your door quicker boxes
We heard last month that Amazon’s been operating four cargo planes out of a state-of-the-art facility in Wilmington, Ohio, in a bid to improve the efficiency of its nationwide shipping operation and hopefully avoid the problems sometimes served up by established firms like UPS and FedEx.

The trial, curiously dubbed “Aerosmith,” has evidently been going well, as the online retail giant is now in talks to lease 20 Boeing 767 jets to expand the operation, the Seattle Times said Friday.

Amazon has reportedly been in talks with several cargo-aircraft firms, and wants to get the initiative off the ground by the end of January. It’s thought the additional aircraft will also operate out of Wilmington, a facility that once served as a major hub for DHL, handling around a million packages a day for the shipping firm between 2003 and 2008.

New Boeing 767 jets are thought to cost up to $650,000 a month to lease. Amazon, however, is expected to lease older planes at the start, which cost about half as much.

Amazon “pretty fed up”

An analyst told the Times that Amazon “is pretty fed up with the third-party carriers being a bottleneck to their growth,” an issue that came into sharp focus a couple of years ago when several big-name shipping firms struggled to cope with the large number of packages in their systems.

Many customers’ deliveries were delayed, forcing Seattle-based Amazon to offer $20 gift cards by way of apology. Following the mess, it promised to review the performance of the delivery carriers, a process that apparently led to its interest in running its own cargo operation.

The e-commerce company is always looking at ways to bolster its delivery operation, especially in the final stage from warehouse to customer. To get packages delivered in super-quick time – within an hour for some Prime members – the company currently uses subways and bicycles, and has also launched an Uber-style system to get more delivery drivers on board. Work on its ambitious delivery drone plan also continues, with the company recently unveiling an all-new design for its flying machine.

Smart Home

Booth babes, banned sex toys, and other mishaps at CES 2019

From female sex toys bans, to fake Tesla/robot collision stories, there was some weird stuff going on at CES 2019 this year. Here are some of the biggest mishaps and flubs at the world's biggest tech show.

Tesla cuts workforce by 7 percent, ends referral program to trim costs

Tesla has announced plans to trim its workforce by seven percent, and it will end the referral program that rewards customers who help it sell cars. These measures are ways to cut costs and boost profits.
Emerging Tech

Forget fireworks. Japan will soon have artificial meteor showers on tap

Tokyo-based startup Astro Live Experiences is preparing to launch its first artificial meteor shower over Japan, serving as a showcase of its prowess in the space entertainment sector.
Product Review

Ring Video Doorbell 2 is the simplest entry into a smarter doorway

The Ring Video Doorbell 2 may lack the style and sophistication of premium door-dingers, but few can match its simplicity and versatility. The device, available in both wired and wireless configurations, is easy to set up and adds instant…
Movies & TV

You can get a screaming deal on LG OLED TVs just in time for the Super Bowl

LG is offering steep discounts on its critically acclaimed OLED TV models just in time for the Super Bowl, letting discerning viewers watch their favorite athletes with higher picture quality than ever.

Shutdown makes dozens of .gov websites insecure due to expired TLS certificates

The US government shutdown is causing trouble in internet security. As the shutdown enters day 22, dozens of government websites have been rendered insecure or inaccessible due to expired transport layer security (TLS) certificates.
Social Media

A quick swipe will soon let you keep bingeing YouTube on mobile devices

The YouTube mobile app has a new, faster way to browse: Swiping. Once the update rolls out, users can swipe to go to the next (or previous) video in the recommended list, even while viewing in full screen.

Our favorite Chrome themes add some much-needed pizzazz to your boring browser

Sometimes you just want Chrome to show a little personality and ditch the grayscale for something a little more lively. Lucky for you, we've sorted through the Chrome Web Store to find best Chrome themes available.

Cathay Pacific messes up first-class ticket prices — again

A couple of weeks ago, an error on Cathay Pacific's website resulted in first-class seats selling for a tenth of the price. On Sunday, January 13, the airline made the error again. The good news is that it'll honor the bookings.

Reluctant to give your email address away? Here's how to make a disposable one

Want to sign up for a service without the risk of flooding your inbox with copious amounts of spam and unwanted email? You might want to consider using disposable email addresses via one of these handy services.
Social Media

YouTube to crack down on dangerous stunts like the ‘Bird Box’ challenge

YouTube already bans content showing dangerous activities, but new rules published by the site go into greater detail regarding potentially harmful challenges and pranks, including certain blindfold- or laundry detergent-based stunts.

Pinning websites to your taskbar is as easy as following these quick steps

Would you like to know how to pin a website to the taskbar in Windows 10 in order to use browser links like apps? Whichever browser you're using, it's easier than you might think. Here's how to get it done.

Want to save a webpage as a PDF? Just follow these steps

Need to quickly save and share a webpage? The best way is to learn how to save a webpage as a PDF file, as they're fully featured and can handle images and text with ease. Here's how.

Delete tracking cookies from your system by following these quick steps

Cookies are useful when it comes to saving your login credentials and other data, but they can also be used by advertisers to track your browsing habits across multiple sites. Here's how to clear cookies in the major browsers.