After Amazon Unbox and AmazonMP3 Beta, the virtual mortar and pestle retailer has stealthily released a Software download (opens in new tab) section which, for the time being, contains nothing more than Tax software from TurboTax.
You can purchase the software title and download it directly to your computer with no shipping fees, no wasted packaging and no waiting (except for the download).
While this is nothing new - Digitalriver (opens in new tab) for example has been in this business for 13 years - the fact that a major e-tailer like Amazon has decided to throw its weight behind the concept means that a time when all the content you purchased (video, audio, software, e-books) will be safely available online if ever you need to access them remotely or if there's any glitch.
Amazon allows you to save your software in a "Your Media Library (opens in new tab)" section and while the service requires you to install a software downloader and is compatible only with Windows XP and Windows Vista, Amazon has pledged to extend its support to other operating systems.
Amazon's software downloader supports up to 10 asynchronous connections to improve download speed and the service itself is unfortunately available only in the US for now.