Amazon shrinks hardware efforts following Fire phone flop

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Amazon makes drastic changes to prevent another Fire phone disaster.
Photo: Amazon

Amazon has dismissed dozens of engineers and ditched a handful of hardware projects following its dismal attempt at tackling the smartphone market, according to a new report.

The retail giant has also restructured what’s left of its hardware division, combining what was two separate units into one.

Were damning anecdotes about Amazon workplace fair?

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A newspaper story that alleges brutal workplace conditions at Amazon has been the talk of the web.
A newspaper story that alleges brutal workplace conditions at Amazon has been the talk of the web.
Photo: Roberto Baldwin/The Next Web

In the news business, a story that has legs stays in our heads, conversations and spins off follow-up headlines. Such was this week’s major newspaper expose describing Amazon as a hellish pressure cooker where employees cry at their desks.

Not everyone agreed with The New York Times piece that drew this conclusion after interviews with more than 100 current and former workers. Now even a Times editor is questioning whether the story was fair.

Jeff Bezos dismisses claims that Amazon is an evil employer

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Jeff Bezos says The New York Times painted an inaccurate picture of life at Amazon.
Jeff Bezos says The New York Times painted an inaccurate picture of life at Amazon.
Photo: Steve Jurvetson/Flickr CC

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos wouldn’t want to toil in the dehumanizing hellhole described in a recent report about work conditions at his company. In a memo to employees responding to the allegations, Bezos painted a picture of caring Amazonians who are “fun” and “brilliant” and “helping to invent the future, and laughing along the way.”

He also said anybody who gets treated badly by Amazon should snitch to HR — or email him directly to air their grievances.

Amazon employee steals $12,500 of iPhones, iPads and other devices

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Amazon Prime Crime doesn't pay.
Amazon Prime Crime doesn't pay.
Photo: Torley/Flickr CC

A 21-year-old Amazon employee in India has been arrested for allegedly stealing $12,500 worth of electronics — including numerous Apple devices — while working in the packing department of the company’s warehouse.

Pramod Bhamble placed orders himself, but instead of packing the correct products, he stuffed the container full of the equivalent weight of iPhones, iPads, cameras and high-end watches before mailing the order to his home.

Amazon takes on Dropbox with Cloud Drive app

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Amazon's Cloud Drive app made its debut on iOS.
Photo: George Tinari/Cult of Mac

Amazon is getting more serious about taking a piece of the cloud storage action. Over the holiday weekend, the company released its Amazon Cloud Drive app for iOS, letting you finally access your files in Amazon’s cloud from your iPhone or iPad.

The app competes with the likes of Dropbox by enabling you to view your files anywhere, but falls short in a number of key areas.