Amazon Trials SMS Shipment Status Alerts

Written by Fred J. Aun
November 18th, 2009

Amazon is in the midst of a very limited trial to send SMS text alerts to customers to update them on delivery status. The SMS package tracking feature—which Amazon said is being tested with “a small set of customers”—is available only for items sold by Amazon, not those offered by third-party sellers on The text messages include the order tracking ID number as well as information about the shipment’s whereabouts, such as “Out for Delivery @ 10:15 A.M.,” according to Amazon. The company said it will only send text messages between 8:00 A.M. and 5:00 P.M. Pacific time.

After they click the “Track your package” button, customers being offered the SMS service are presented with a page on which they can enter their mobile number and click a “sign up” button. Although Amazon is known for its speedy, 1-Click ordering, this option would seem to be unavailable for SMS users—at least in the trial version. Users won’t be able to change preferences to add text alerts for all purchases, the retailer said. Instead, customers must request text alerts individually for every order.


3 Comments | Read Amazon Trials SMS Shipment Status Alerts

  1. David Dorf Says:

    I tried this service for two recent orders. The text messages arrived about 24hrs after each package did.

  2. Evan Schuman Says:

    Better late than never?
    My initial reaction might have been “If that’s typical, the system is fairly worthless,” but maybe not. It could still be useful to confirm (in theory) that a gift arrived where it was supposed to.
    Then again, Amazon already offered that kind of tracking, making the sole virtue of the text message being speed. Maybe the initial thought was correct.

  3. Aloke Says:

    I tried this on a recent kindle expedited shipping order. I received the SMS in the evening, although the package was delivered in the morning. Shouldn’t it have also alerted me about the package whereabouts along the way?


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