Amazon expands its airborne shipping fleet to 50 planes

It's further reducing reliance on third-party air carriers.

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Amazon's famous drones have yet to deliver much of anything, but its jets are a different story. After launching Prime Air in 2016 with 40 jets, the company appears to have renamed it "Amazon Air" and added 10 more Boeing 767-300 cargo aircraft. It now flies Amazon Air out of 20 different gateway airports "making two-day shipping possible almost anywhere in the US," the company said.

Amazon recently unveiled a gateway operation in Wilmington, Ohio that will open in 2019, and now says it will launch a regional air hub at Fort Worth Alliance airport and an Air Hub at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International airport, both of which will open in 2021. The bottom line for consumers is that Amazon is taking more control of its US shipping operations, which should speed up shipments and reduce prices. Whether drones will ever fit into this operation -- other than as a marketing tool -- remains to be seen.

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