Amazon.com has launched a new feature within its shopping app for iOS and Android users to cater to international customers shopping for U.S. goods, according to a report from Reuters. The feature, which was announced late on Tuesday, will enable users to shop in five languages, including English, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, German, and Brazilian Portuguese, and will be able to make purchases in 25 currencies. In addition, the new update displays clear pricing, shipping costs, and import duty estimates. Amazon’s app also filters products that are available to ship to specific countries, and coordinates with courier services for customs clearance. International shipping is already an option on many orders from Amazon’s U.S. website, but the new services are aimed at making it easier to browse the app and order products abroad.
Total Retail's Take: Frankly, I'm surprised this functionality is just being added to Amazon's app now. After all, it will open Amazon up to a whole host of new regions and customers. Amazon's penetration in Brazil will be an interesting case study. Latin America’s largest economy, Brazil is a place where Amazon has shown signs in recent months of expanding its local operations. While the country of more than 200 million people is seen as an emerging battleground for the e-commerce industry, its customs system and import taxes are notoriously costly and bureaucratic. Amazon rival Alibaba, for example, has faced a number of issues trying to streamline imports into Brazil in recent years.