GT Explains: What Happened to Amazon Dash Buttons?

George Tinari

Amazon quietly made a very odd change to its Amazon Dash buttons recently. You might be familiar with the physical buttons Amazon sold to quickly get refills on common household items? Yep, those were Dash buttons and Amazon made a huge change to them.

Amazon’s newest Dash buttons aren’t as, let’s say, three-dimensional.

Rather than launching a new product under a new name, which would have made much more sense, Amazon created an entirely new facet of Dash buttons. For whatever reason, they are virtual now. Despite the virtual buttons being totally separate from the physical Dash buttons, they operate under the same name.

Accessing Your New Amazon Dash Buttons

The new, virtual Dash buttons live in your Amazon account. The major perk of having virtual Dash buttons is that they’re customizable unlike their physical counterparts. Plus, because you’re already logged into Amazon when you use them, you don’t need to enter panic mode if you make a purchase by accident. Just quickly cancel the order and you’re set.

You can find Dash buttons on Amazon’s home page over on the right. Scroll a bit to get there, but sure enough you’ll see the skeuomorphic design trend is very much alive and well with Amazon.

Your Dash buttons are automatically populated with products you order frequently. Click the brand name for information on the specific product that button purchases and click the white button to purchase immediately.

Also access Dash buttons by hovering over Account & Lists on Amazon’s website, then clicking Your Dash Buttons in the menu. This is also the easiest place to organize your buttons.

To add a new Dash button, just search for a product on Amazon and click the product page. As long as it ships via Prime shipping, you should see the Add to your Dash Buttons link on the right near the purchase options. Click this to create a button for easy access. It’ll again live on the Dash Buttons page and on the home page in the sidebar.

There is an argument to be made that finding a Dash button and clicking it isn’t much easier than finding a product and clicking Buy, but that’s up to you to decide. Personally, I don’t use Dash buttons very often because the thought of a one-click purchase still scares me. I’d rather go through the more tedious add-to-cart process and ensure I’m getting the right stuff.

Can You Still Order Physical Dash Buttons?

Yes you most certainly can. I was confused about this at first, but it turns out Amazon still does sell physical Dash buttons called “Dash Button devices.” They’re $4.99 a pop as they always are and they make a lot more sense than virtual buttons do.

The major perk of having virtual Dash buttons is that they’re customizable unlike their physical counterparts.

While they are not customizable in the same way, the list of supported brands grows every day. Over 300 brands are now on board with Amazon Dash Button devices and if you buy two, you can get a third for free. Even better, they’re actually free after your first press. Once you place your first order, Amazon will credit your account the $4.99 back. It’s a pretty sweet deal.

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George Tinari

Written By

George Tinari

George Tinari has written about technology for over seven years: guides, how-tos, news, reviews and more. He's usually sitting in front of his laptop, eating, listening to music or singing along loudly to said music. You can also follow him on Twitter @gtinari if you need more complaints and sarcasm in your timeline.