Remember back in the olden days when you could easily find stores you could walk into that would have shelves and shelves of physical books, and you could thumb through those books and even sit down and read a few pages before buying them?
According to CNBC, Amazon.com, which started as an Internet bookstore in 1995 before growing into the largest online retailer in the U.S., is planning to open hundreds of brick-and-mortar bookstores across America.
Few details have been released, but Amazon is planning for the physical stores to be extensions of their online service, complete with the same prices for the books. In November, the company announced plans for a single bookstore in Seattle with customer ratings displayed with products.
Amazon Books vice president Jennifer Cast says, "We've applied 20 years of online bookselling experience to build a store that integrates the benefits of offline and online book shopping."
The Amazon bookstore concept has been compared to the successful Apple store model where allowing customers to touch a product helps them connect with it.
Panmure Gordon technology analyst George O'Connor writes, "You can buy products online but customers do like to 'kick the tyres' and have a bit of a road test."