October 4, 2004, 12:00 AM

Amazon makes it easier to access its product database

With the release today of its E-Commerce Services 4.0, Amazon is providing web site developers access to one million more products in its product database as well as images, customer reviews and other data. Web traffic data from Alexis is also included.

Kurt Peters

Executive Editor

With the release today of its E-Commerce Services 4.0, Amazon.com Inc. is providing web site developers access to 1 million more products in its product database as well as images, customer reviews and other data. Web traffic data from Alexis Web Information Service is also included.

ECS 4.0, which replaces Amazon Web Services 3.0, lets developers access product data in several categories not previously available: Apparel & Accessories, Jewelry & Watches, Gourmet Food, Sports & Outdoors, Musical Instruments, Health & Personal Care and Beauty. ECS 4.0 provides access to data on millions of products throughout Amazon’s product database; it also provides for advanced site search capabilities, including searching by price, brand and category instead of just a single keyword, and increased shopping cart functionality.

ECS 4.0 also gives developers access to all customer reviews stored in Amazon’s databases. Previously, developers could access only three reviews per product. In addition, developers can access a broader amount of product details for describing Amazon products. Amazon does not charge any fees related to ECS 4.0.

Among the developers already using ECS 4.0 in a beta test is Simplest-Shop.com, which lets consumers compare and contrast consumer electronics and other Amazon products using dozens of product attributes. Another developer, WWWinkazon, located on the web at NaturallyOpen.com/wwwinkazon, lets consumers use their browser to highlight the name of an Amazon product in descriptive text, then click a link to pop up an Amazon web page window to review product details and make a purchase.

The Alexis service, which is being offered free temporarily along with ECS 4.0, provides information from a crawl of 4 billion web pages. For example, users can view Alexis data to find a list of web addresses that have content matching certain search keywords.

 

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