Amazon

What is Amazon AWS?

AWS

Episode 1758

Joey from San Diego, CA

Joey wants to know about Amazon's AWS and S3 storage. He can't figure it out. Leo says that there are several levels of S3 storage, including Glacier. And S3 is used by DropBox and others as their back end. It's a bit techy, but it's designed for home use. Fast to backup, but very slow to download and restore. It's like cold storage. It's become the biggest part of Amazon's business, with over a third of cloud services run by AWS.

Amazon also offers cloud computing, with such services as Macintosh in the Cloud, and others.

Amazon's New Idea ... Amazon Sidewalk

Amazon Sidewalk

Episode 1750

Wanting to offer a neighborhood-based wifi network, Amazon has announced Amazon Sidewalk, which uses Bluetooth low energy (BLE) radios to connect everyone from house to house. You can get motion alerts from your security cameras, track your pets if they should run away, and even notifications when the mailman leaves you mail. As long as one device sees the other, it can pass along connectivity with a promised small amount of bandwidth. 

How does eBay know what I buy on Amazon?

eBay

Episode 1740

Jerry from Hatfield, PA

Jerry has been shopping on Amazon for some tools, and recently when visiting eBay for alternative shopping, he's been getting a notification from Amazon about what he's been doing online. That's creepy. Leo says it's probably Google doing it, in spite of using a VPN. If you're still logged in, they can track you. Amazon may also be selling your search activity with eBay. It's in the terms of service that they can do that.

Are Amazon Renewed Laptops Good to Buy?

HP Elite.

Episode 1729

Bobby from Lakewood, FL

Bobby needs to replace the hard drive for his HP Elite. But he's considering getting a refurbished replacement instead since it'll cost $160 to replace the drive. Leo says that it largely depends on how the law works for refurbished in Bobby's state. In California, it's illegal to sell an open box return as "new." So they are listed as refurbished, and if bought from an original manufacturer, it'll come with a warranty. So that's a good deal since it'll save a few hundred dollars.

How Can I Turn Off Echo Making Phone Calls?

Alexa

Episode 1729

Steve from Redondo Beach, CA

Steve wants to turn off in his Amazon Alexa. He can't stop his 4-year-olds from making calls. Leo says that he may have to call Amazon Support at 1 (888) 280-4331 and ask them to disable it. Presumably, it's a safety feature in case of emergencies. He could turn off the option in the Amazon app, turning it off device by device. Go to preferences - then communications. There's a disable option by device. Steve said that he looked and the option isn't on in the app. But it still works. So only a call to Amazon will prevent that from happening.

Why can't I order air purifier filters from Amazon?

Air Filters

Episode 1728

Craig from Santa Clarita, CA

Craig is calling to talk about air filters. He has Eureka air purifiers that he bought last year during the fire season. But he can't get replacement filters for them. Amazon says they can't deliver to his address. Is that a regulation? In the chatroom - suggests going to factorydirectfilters.com.It could be Prop 65 or some California regulation that's preventing it, though. One article mentions that these air purifiers can actually add Ozone to the air.