Amazon Sees Mobile Web as Opportunity

Amazon recently shut TXTReview out of their e-commerce web services. TXTReview provides book and movie reviews via test messaging on mobile devices.

The interesting thing about this story is the clarification that Amazon gave for why they had stopped allowing TXTReview to use their APIs:

We do limit access by some mobile-focused companies to just that service. Its says in our license agreement for that service that developers must first get permission from Amazon Web Services prior to using Amazon ECS in connection with any handheld, mobile, or mobile phone application (see 5.1.4 here) . The reason is that it’s very early days in the mobile space and is still thinking through how to best serve customers who want to use mobile devices to shop on At this point, we’re being cautious about exposing our catalog data for use in the mobile space.

So unlike most people who take mobile devices for granted, Amazon believes the mobile space is in its infancy. They see opportunity there and are being cautious to not lock themselves in. They see so much possibility there, that they’ve codified this perspective in their terms of service.

This shows more foresight than most companies have on where technology is going and is further evidence that the mobile web is likely to take off in the near future.