With its profound knowledge of its customers, Amazon can move into almost any sector – striking fear into the hearts of rivals. And the $740bn company is ‘just getting started’

The computer on which this article was written is sitting on a laptop stand that tells you everything you need to know about how Amazon does business. At $19.99 (£14.99) a pop, the laptop stand combines everything customers love about Amazon: utility, price and convenience. It’s also a total and complete knockoff – of a laptop stand that the San Francisco-based company Rain Design began selling nearly a decade before Amazon decided to make its own.

Amazon’s innovation with its own version was to replace Rain Design’s raindrop logo with its own smiley arrow logo – and cut the price in half.

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