Amazon may have killed off its Dash Buttons and Dash Wand, but it’s not done with its Dash business quite yet, with the Dash Smart Shelf making its debut today for both small businesses and consumers.
The $20 Dash Smart ShelfRemove non-product link is essentially a flat, Wi-Fi enabled scale that sits on a shelf and holds supplies, anything from dishwasher detergent and paper towels to instant oatmeal and bottled water. When your supplies start running out, the Dash Smart Shelf can automatically reorder them from Amazon, or it can send you a mobile notification.
If all this sounds a little familiar, you might be thinking of Amazon’s other Dash devices, such as the Dash button, which you could press to reorder specific products from Amazon, or the Dash Wand, which you could use to scan the barcodes or groceries in your kitchen.
But while the demise of the Button and Wand seemed to spell doom for the Dash brand, here comes the Dash Smart Shelf, which is on sale now.
Amazon first unveiled the Dash Smart Shelf about a year ago, pitching it as a solution for small businesses looking to streamline inventory management. But consumers expressed interest in the Smart Shelf as well, and Amazon says it has now enabled the Wi-Fi-enabled shelf for everyday shoppers as well as business users.
Powered by four AAA batteries (there’s also an optional AC adapter), the Dash Smart Shelf comes in three sizes: small (7×7 inches), medium (12×10 inches) and large (18×13 inches).
The shelf connects to either your Amazon Business account or the Amazon Shopping app via Wi-FI, and when it senses that the supplies it’s holding are running low, it can automatically reorder them from Amazon.
Of course, you can’t just put anything on the Smart Shelf. Amazon has a list of all the Dash-enabled products that it carries, running the gamut from toiletries and office supplies to snacks and pet food. And you can’t mix and match Dash items on the shelf (it isn’t that smart); instead, you’ll need to put only one type of item on the shelf at a time.
You can use the Amazon Shopping app to set the threshold below which the Dash Smart Shelf will reorder your supplies. It’s also worth noting that the shelf won’t reorder any items until it runs below the preset threshold for more than 12 hours, thus preventing it from jumping the gun if you’re doing some reorganizing.
Overall, it’s a clever concept we’re eager to take for a test drive, and we’re happy to learn that Amazon’s Dash products aren’t quite dead.
Ben has been writing about technology and consumer electronics for more than 20 years. A PCWorld contributor since 2014, Ben joined TechHive in 2019, where he covers smart speakers, soundbars, and other smart and home-theater devices. You can follow Ben on Twitter.