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Amazon's Mayday Button Response Averages 9 Seconds

By - Source: Amazon Press Release | B 15 comments

While many Americans were gathered around a tree ripping colored paper off gifted fruit cakes and socks, some Amazon employees were hard at work answering the Mayday-branded calls of distress by new Kindle Fire HDX customers.

According to Amazon, the company was shooting to reach 15 seconds after a Mayday button was hit, but Amazon employees managed a 9-second average instead.

Mayday, for the uninitiated, is a specific software-based button on Amazon's new tablets that contacts the support center. Once pressed, an Amazon technician will appear on the screen and co-pilot the user through any feature by drawing on the screen. Tech support can walk users through the steps to do something specific, or customers can sit back and let the tech do the steps solo.

Mayday is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, and it's free.

"We set a goal for ourselves to have a response time of 15 seconds or less when a customer tapped the Mayday button--we're proud to say that on Christmas Day we met this goal, with an average response time of just 9 seconds," said Dave Limp, Vice President, Amazon Kindle. "We're excited that millions of customers opened a Kindle Fire tablet this holiday season, and we're glad so many customers tried out the Mayday button."

Amazon on Thursday listed a number of customer reactions on Christmas day, including one girl who received a Kindle Fire HDX for Christmas. She was reportedly playing around with the tablet until she accidentally hit the Mayday button. An Amazon tech popped up on the screen, making the girl scream. Her parents were reportedly heard laughing in the background.

Other notable Mayday experiences include a group of carolers calling in to wish tech support a Merry Christmas.

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  • 0 Hide
    jaghpanther , December 26, 2013 4:28 PM
    You know, my sister asked if the reps actually show up on screen. If they do, how many have been meet with unmentionable parts showing on their web cam?
  • 0 Hide
    rpstrong , December 26, 2013 5:10 PM
    They assure you that they can see your screen, but that they can't see you.
  • 1 Hide
    jaghpanther , December 26, 2013 5:15 PM
    Quote:
    They assure you that they can see your screen, but that they can't see you.


    Well, I think that would have been hilarious being as I have a low sense of humor.
  • 1 Hide
    JOSHSKORN , December 26, 2013 6:01 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    They assure you that they can see your screen, but that they can't see you.


    Well, I think that would have been hilarious being as I have a low sense of humor.


    Agreed. But can the technician gain control of your webcam if you allow them to do so? If so, is this a verbal consent or do you have to tap another button? I would feel more comfortable if I had to tap another button.
  • 0 Hide
    rpstrong , December 26, 2013 6:04 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    Quote:
    They assure you that they can see your screen, but that they can't see you.


    Well, I think that would have been hilarious being as I have a low sense of humor.


    Agreed. But can the technician gain control of your webcam if you allow them to do so? If so, is this a verbal consent or do you have to tap another button? I would feel more comfortable if I had to tap another button.


    You'd have to ask Amazon that - but why would they want to use your camera?
  • 0 Hide
    jaghpanther , December 26, 2013 6:05 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    Quote:
    They assure you that they can see your screen, but that they can't see you.


    Well, I think that would have been hilarious being as I have a low sense of humor.


    Agreed. But can the technician gain control of your webcam if you allow them to do so? If so, is this a verbal consent or do you have to tap another button? I would feel more comfortable if I had to tap another button.


    There is no mention that I've been able to find. Just says they can see the screen and "highlight" items. Guess higher level tech questions will have to be passed on, but this is something I can ask too.
  • 0 Hide
    jaghpanther , December 26, 2013 6:11 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    Quote:
    Quote:
    They assure you that they can see your screen, but that they can't see you.


    Well, I think that would have been hilarious being as I have a low sense of humor.


    Agreed. But can the technician gain control of your webcam if you allow them to do so? If so, is this a verbal consent or do you have to tap another button? I would feel more comfortable if I had to tap another button.


    You'd have to ask Amazon that - but why would they want to use your camera?


    Maybe you can't figure out how to change the settings/filters on the camera, or they get a generic "My camera is not working."
  • 3 Hide
    Bill Wendel , December 26, 2013 9:41 PM
    If there is remote access to the tablet then there is the ability to hack for tablet access and access to the camera. Just give it time.
  • 3 Hide
    teh_chem , December 26, 2013 9:57 PM
    The movie Idiocracy is coming to life. I'm sure this tech has value with non-tech-literate people. But I think there's a certain amount of investigating that people should be capable of, that having someone on the other end of the line to show you what you need to do (or actually do for you) is detracting from the intelligence-factor. I don't know, maybe I'm just feeling pessimistic.

    For the actual mayday button response, my wife tried it a couple times on her device--it worked quite well, just to see what the fuss was about. What I never quite understood is why a video of the other person needs to be shown at all? They are 'virtually' showing you what to do remotely, and can take control of your device--it's not like they hold up diagrams and signs over the video to show you what to do. They're just staring at a computer screen while they help the customer through their problem.
  • 6 Hide
    frederico , December 27, 2013 1:53 AM
    Amazon are offering help in 9 seconds and people are finding a way to complain about it?

    I mean, I can easily spend 1 hour just trying to contact my electricity company, I would give an arm and a leg to have them appear on my screen in 9 seconds and start either helping me sort the problems or do them autonomously while I sit back

    Someone else mentioned the possibility of Amazon employees hacking the cam - well they probably could, but then they'd probably be fired very damn quick.
  • 1 Hide
    joe gamer , December 27, 2013 5:49 AM
    How dumb do you have to be to need help with a kindle? It is literally the MOST limited tablet in existence, my stupid kindle barely has any functionality to it at all, watch videos, read books, play games from the lame ass Amazon market....the end.
    If you can't figure that out then I don't know what hope there is for humanity.
  • 0 Hide
    burkhartmj , December 27, 2013 8:49 AM
    Quote:
    How dumb do you have to be to need help with a kindle? It is literally the MOST limited tablet in existence, my stupid kindle barely has any functionality to it at all, watch videos, read books, play games from the lame ass Amazon market....the end.
    If you can't figure that out then I don't know what hope there is for humanity.


    While I get your point, there are some people who just don't adapt or comprehend new interfaces very easily or quickly. If you've ever played IT for your grandma who just got a new tablet, you know that some people are just bad at technology no matter how generally bright they are or how easy it seems to you.
  • 0 Hide
    rwinches , December 27, 2013 9:48 AM
    Why do they have to announce this?
    Now crackers will spoof the request and they'll be hit with DOS or, as pointed out, gain access to tabs.
  • 0 Hide
    stevejnb , December 27, 2013 2:07 PM
    I always chuckle when I see some self proclaimed computer tech guys laughing at other people for having difficulty with simple computer problems, because most of these smugly superior twits probably would shy away from a simple job like changing a toilet/faucet, flushing a radiator, or home cooking crème caramel.
  • 0 Hide
    g-unit1111 , December 27, 2013 5:33 PM
    Quote:
    You know, my sister asked if the reps actually show up on screen. If they do, how many have been meet with unmentionable parts showing on their web cam?


    Interesting question, and yes I want to know the answer too! :D