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Londoners can now order nappies in an hour with Amazon Prime Now

Amazon's one-hour delivery service makes its first international expansion, coming to certain postcodes in London.

Ben Fox Rubin Former senior reporter
Ben Fox Rubin was a senior reporter for CNET News in Manhattan, reporting on Amazon, e-commerce and mobile payments. He previously worked as a reporter for The Wall Street Journal and got his start at newspapers in New York, Connecticut and Massachusetts.
Ben Fox Rubin
2 min read

Customers can order batteries, toys and sports equipment through Amazon's Prime Now. Screenshot by CNET of Amazon.co.uk

Amazon's Prime Now rapid delivery service has made the jump across the pond.

Starting Tuesday, people in certain London postcodes can start using the e-commerce company's Prime Now mobile app, allowing them to order over 10,000 items for one-hour delivery. Orders can include essentials such as coffee, batteries and nappies (US translation: diapers), in addition to toys and sports equipment.

The move to London marks Prime Now's first international expansion, after the new service first launched in Manhattan in December. Amazon plans to cover all of London as well as branch out to more UK cities by year's end.

London locals enrolled in Amazon's Prime membership service can get deliveries in one hour by paying £6.99, or can get free deliveries within two hours. The service is available between 8 a.m. and midnight, seven days a week.

With the help of Prime Now, Amazon has been leading the push for faster deliveries of online purchases. That's part of Amazon's effort to make its website and mobile apps a bigger draw for customers versus brick-and-mortar rivals such as Best Buy, Walmart and Macy's. However, many traditional retailers are getting into speedy deliverie, too, with the help of startups such as Postmates and Deliv, so Amazon doesn't have the luxury of slowing down anytime soon.

In addition to Prime Now, Amazon last month rolled out free, same-day deliveries for over 1 million items to its Prime members in certain US cities. The company is also researching the prospect of using drones to fly packages to customers.

Amazon started Prime Now in Manhattan in December and quickly expanded the service to Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Brooklyn, Dallas, Manhattan and Miami. In the US, two-hour deliveries in certain ZIP codes are free for Prime members, who pay $99 a year for unlimited two-day deliveries and other benefits. One-hour deliveries for Prime members -- available in more limited areas -- cost $8.

In London, two-hour delivery is available across most of central London, extending from Marylebone and Mayfair in the west across Charing Cross and Waterloo to Aldgate in the east, and from the river Thames as far north as Kings Cross. One-hour delivery is available further East, extending from the City of London to Canary Wharf and surrounding areas.

--Senior Editor Richard Trenholm contributed to this report.