Best Buy Co Inc (BBY) Tumbles As Amazon Offers Geek Squad Competitor

Best Buy Co Inc (BBY) Tumbles As Amazon Offers Geek Squad Competitor

Best Buy Co Inc (BBY) Tumbles As Amazon Offers Geek Squad Competitor

Amazon has not responded to a request for comment on how many workers it will employ. The people are actual Amazon employees-not contractors-who also have the appropriate certifications where required by local laws and regulations.

Shares of Best Buy were down 3.7 percent in pre-market trading on Monday in the wake of a report that Amazon is forming its own "Geek Squad" to support its sales of electronics. It's one major advantage that the retailer continues to boast over Amazon but it appears that Amazon is now setting up its own army of trained personnel that will visit the customer to set up their "smart home". The service is meant to help customers set up their "smart home", a term used to describe devices like thermostats and smart speakers that can be controlled using apps and voice commands.

Insider sources told Recode Amazon has been quietly hiring its smart home technicians in several cities, and that it'll expand to more markets soon.

This new Geek Squad competitor could help remove one of the greatest barriers to entry in the smart home market: the cumbersome setup process.

According the offering's home page, Amazon experts are available to consumers in Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, San Diego, L.A., Orange County and San Jose for the time being. They also provide tech support and fix services for PCs.

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Amazon is pushing Alexa as the platform of choice for smart home control, while Best Buy is promoting both Alexa and Google Home.

But now that Amazon is getting into home consultations, Best Buy should be anxious that it will keep expanding.

Of course, Best Buy is hardly alone in trying to turn in-home installations and CE gadget repairs into a business. You can use Apple's website to find a local Apple Consultants Network member to help, assuming you've heard of the program. The new offers began after the company saw a higher than average return rate for smart-home electronics and started the service in an attempt to lower those rates, according to Recode's Jason Del Ray.

Amazon introduced this new consultation and in-home technical assistance and installation business without much publicity.

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