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Amazon Opens TV Call Center

Seattle – has opened an around-the-clock call center to help consumers with their advanced-TV purchasing decisions.

The call center is administered by Magnolia Hi-Fi veteran Rob Williams and is manned 24-hours a day, seven days a week by specially-trained Amazon staffers. The online service, dubbed “click-to-call,” will be available for TVs retailing for $1,000 or more, and can be accessed by clicking on an icon located at the bottom of select product pages. Testing began last month.

“It’s a chance for customers to talk to someone live to match their needs to the appropriate TV,” said Frank Sadowski, VP/global CE vendor management for the online retailer.

Noah Herschman, Amazon’s director of audio and video, said site features such as click-to-call, 180-degree product views, and white glove delivery have helped the company’s TV business outpace industry growth. Amazon has recently expanded its HDTV assortment to include such new brands as Mitsubishi, Pioneer, Hitachi and Sony XBR, he said, and has begun receiving direct deliveries of big screen merchandise versus two-step distribution.

The company is also expected to launch a custom home installation offer in the near future.