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Amazon begins its 10,000 layoff target from devices, services units

Nov 16 – Amazon.com Inc is laying off workers in its devices and services units, America’s second-largest private employer told employees on Wednesday that it would layoff about 10,000 employees, following recent reports.

The e-commerce giant did not provide details on the number of jobs it will cut or the time frame. Its shares fell 3%.

Still, the announcement heralded a dramatic shift for a company known for job creation and added shape to the latest round of layoffs in the technology sector.

The reduction covers the device division, which popularized speakers that consumers control by speaking.

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The retailer once pushed for Alexa, its voice assistant that powers the device, to be ubiquitous and present for placing any shopping orders, though it was unclear how widely users have adopted it for more complex tasks than checking the news or the weather.

News outlets including Reuters reported on Monday that the cuts would reach about 3% of Amazon’s roughly 300,000 corporate employees, without affecting warehouse and shipping associates.

Some individuals working for Alex took to LinkedIn on Tuesday to say they had lost their jobs.

The virtual assistant, a project inspired by the talking computer in the sci-fi show Star Trek, acquired a staff that grew to 10,000 people by 2019.

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At the time, Amazon was touting the sale of more than 100 million Alexa devices, a figure it has not publicly restated since. Founder Jeff Bezos later said the company often sold Alexa devices at a discount and sometimes below cost.

While Amazon struggled to code intelligent answers to any question Alexa would expect from users, OpenAI, backed by Alphabet Inc ( GOOGL.O ), Google and Microsoft Corp ( MSFT.O ), made a breakthrough in chatbots that could respond like a human without any hands. share.

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