After selling books online for nearly 22 years, Amazon has begun to open brick-and-mortar stores across the U.S. Its first Manhattan bookstore officially opened for business in the Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle earlier on Thursday.
Serving as an extension of Amazon.com, the store is cashless and only carries about 3,000 books at a time, which strictly consists of bestsellers and books with four-star ratings and above on their website, according to reports.
Book reviews are also on the bookstore's shelves for references for visitors, and a "Page Turners" section is available for Kindle readers to read in three days or less.
Notably, an Amazon Prime Membership matters when you decide to purchase a book at their physical store, because the price of books varies significantly between Prime members and regular customers, while the price for devices stays the same as shown on the website.
With the 4,000-square-foot neighborhood bookstore marking the seventh location in the U.S., another store in midtown is also scheduled to open, and the company is said to make it to 13 at the end of the year.
In the digital age of modern world, where online purchasing is so ubiquitous, is this a way of going backward for such an e-commerce giant to take on offline shopping? All in all, reading is always to be expected, no matter how you do it.