A report claims that Amazon is ending support for its six-year-old Dash Wand, the gadget it sold in the US that let you scan food barcodes to add them to your next Amazon order (via AFTVNews). All Wands will stop working on 21 July, with Amazon set to refer people to its device recycling program.
Latter versions of the Wand added Alexa so you could also use your voice to add to your shopping list. The Dash Wand can be viewed as a precursor to the now far more ubiquitous Amazon Echo or Google Home smart speakers where you can add items to shopping lists vocally.
But the Dash Wand’s barcode scanner leaves less room for error than voice controls, and it’s a shame the concept didn’t take off. Its simple scan-to-add use case is pretty fool proof. The problem might lie in Amazon not being able to get a foothold in online food shopping, and the fact that the Wand was a Wi-Fi device that had to be used in the home.
Amazon’s purchase of Whole Foods in the US seems to suggest that the giant realises there’s still value in physical food stores. The death of Dash Buttons and now the Dash Wand could spell the winding down of the Amazon Dash brand completely. But don’t bet on Amazon giving up on food shopping online entirely.