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• Amazon announced this morning that it has opened its third Amazon Go checkout-free store in San Francisco - at 575 Market Street, less than a mile from the Go stores located on California Street and Post Street there.

The 1,750 square feet unit in the city’s Financial District will be closed on Sundays. It is the 11th Amazon Go store to be opened by the company; the others are in Seattle and Chicago.

Billboard reports that Amazon may launch a free, ad-supported music service that would intensify “its competitive threat to global streaming leader Spotify … The world’s biggest e-retailer would market the free music service through its voice-activated Echo speakers, sources say, and would offer a limited catalog. It could become available as early as next week.”

The story says that “the move underscores Amazon’s growing power in the music market, as a distributor that can afford to discount music as a loss-leader to support its core retail business. That’s a luxury Spotify doesn’t have, as its shareholders pressure the music-focused public company to turn a profit … Amazon hasn’t disclosed how many paying music subscribers it has, but some reports last year estimated it counts over 20 million subscribers across its offerings and expect it to gain steadily thanks to integration with its market-leading smart speakers.”

Reuters reports that “workers at four Amazon logistic centers in Germany went on strike on Monday, the latest action in a long-running campaign for better pay and conditions.

“Trade union Verdi said workers at warehouses in Rheinberg, Werne, Bad Hersfeld and Koblenz had stopped work, with the strike set to last until Thursday in some centers, and others potentially joining over the Easter holiday period.”

The story points out that “Verdi has organized frequent strikes at Amazon in Germany since 2013 to press demands for the retailer to raise pay for warehouse workers in accordance with collective bargaining agreements in Germany’s mail order and retail industry. Amazon has repeatedly rejected Verdi’s demands and the spokeswoman said the company is a fair and responsible employer without a collective agreement, with wages at the upper end of what is paid in comparable jobs.”
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