Amazon launches Frustration-Free Packaging

November 4, 2008 // 9:11 a.m.

Tags: #amazon #clamshell #environment #frustration-free-packaging #packaging #recycle #reduce

If, like me, you have something of an unhealthy addiction to new and shiny gadgets, you've probably encountered 'packaging rage': the displeasure you experience when you can't play with a new toy because the tamper proof box appears to be constructed of adamantium. If so, you'll be pleased to hear that Amazon have decided to take the initiative in doing away with such frustrations once and for all.

Engadget reports that the company is offering a service it dubs “Frustration-Free Packaging” whereby products from certain companies will be available in a streamlined form constructed from recycled cardboard and with a minimum of waste. Finally.

For its initial run, a mere nineteen products from companies including Fisher-Price, Microsoft, Mattel, and Transcend will be offered with the Frustration-Free Packaging option. The good news is that this is just the beginning, with CEO Jeff Bezos stating that he sees the ultimate goal being “to offer our entire catalog of products in Frustration-Free Packaging,” although he expects the endeavour to “take many years” to accomplish.

Small starts aside, this is an initiative I can only see as offering benefits to all involved. The consumer gets easier access to the toy they've been slavering over, Amazon saves on shipping costs due to reduced weight, the manufacturer saves on packaging costs, and the environment has less wasted plastic dumped into its landfills. I certainly hope that Bezos keeps his word, and that the Frustration-Free Packaging initiative survives beyond a quick grab for a few column inches.

If you're hoping to see the initiative on Amazon's UK site, you'll have to be patient: the project is due to roll out across all international sites early 2009.

Is this music to your ears, or does the resistance of the packaging only make the experience of new gadget acquisition more enjoyable? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

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