Amazon to shut online learning vertical in India amidst edtech slowdown


Amidst the slowdown in edtech, Amazon is shutting down its online learning vertical, Amazon Academy, in India. Launched in early 2021 during the pandemic-led edtech boom, the platform operated in the ‘test prep’ segment and offered virtual coaching for entrance exams, including IIT-JEE and NEET. 

“Amazon will discontinue Amazon Academy’s operations in a phased manner, starting August 2023, when our existing batch completes its test preparation module. We remain committed to our customers and want to assure them that this decision will have no impact on our services,” the company said in a statement.

Amazon Academy customers will have access to full course material online for the extended period of a year (until October 2024). Amazon will also refund the full fee to those enrolled in the current academic batch, it added. 

Amazon Academy, which has over 5 million downloads on Google Play, offered students a bunch of mock tests, question banks, practice questions, solved test papers from previous years, along with daily tips and tricks. Students also had the option of filtering questions by difficulty level (easy, medium, and hard), and comparing their JEE ranks with fellow aspirants.

Commenting on the impending shutdown of the vertical, an Amazon spokesperson said, “At Amazon, we think big, experiment, and invest in new ideas to delight customers. We also continually evaluate the progress and potential of our products and services to deliver customer value, and we regularly make adjustments based on those assessments. Following an assessment, we have made the decision to discontinue Amazon Academy.”

This closure comes at a time when edtech has been hit by the funding winter, resulting in mass layoffs across the industry. India’s top 11 edtech start-ups, including BYJU’S, Unacademy, Vedantu, among others have laid off over 7,000 employees until early November, as per Tracxn.

Unacademy, which competes with Amazon Academy in the test prep segment, has also shifted focus to offline centres, given the lacklustre demand in online learning as the pandemic impact started to wane. 

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