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Photo: Ant Palmer/Getty Images

Amazon is an iceberg: People only see what's above the surface. Meanwhile, underneath, the company just keeps expanding.

Why you'll hear about this again: This has proven true time and time again. When people thought of Amazon as a bookstore, it was already on its way to being an e-commerce giant. When all people saw was an e-commerce giant, Amazon was well on its way to being a marketplace and web services provider.

Amazon Prime — with its expansion into video and music services and its moves into brick and mortar — has been similarly underestimated, though people have at least learned to fear what the company might be up to next.

Here are a couple of new data points suggesting how huge the Amazon iceberg has grown — and where it's headed:

  • After years of being vague about numbers, Amazon confirmed Tuesday that there are 100 million Amazon Prime subscribers. That means they have managed to convince a huge swath of the U.S. population to sign up. (Amazon didn't break out how many of the Prime subscribers were in the U.S. vs. international.)
  • Amazon struck a deal with Best Buy that will see the electronics chain carry televisions with Amazon's Fire TV built in. Now, fast forward a few years and which seems more likely — that this headline will come back to haunt Amazon when Best Buy takes over the online electronics business or that Amazon will get the last laugh?
  • Amazon is announcing today "blueprints" for Alexa, a way for home users to easily create their own quizzes and games for Echo and other devices. Again, some looked at the Echo and saw a smart speaker, where Amazon has quietly built an entirely new operating system.

Go deeper: Axios business editor Dan Primack and I went back and forth about Amazon's size and strength in a video earlier this year.

Go deeper

Mayors press Biden to adopt progressive immigration agenda

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

A coalition of nearly 200 mayors and county executives is challenging Joe Biden and the incoming Congress to adopt a progressive immigration agenda that would give everyone a pathway to citizenship.

Why it matters: The group's goals, set out in a white paper released today, seem to fall slightly to the left of what the president-elect plans to propose on Inauguration Day — though not far — and come at a time of intense national polarization over immigration.

Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals
15 mins ago - Health

Demand for coronavirus vaccines is outstripping supply

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Now that nearly half of the U.S. population could be eligible for coronavirus vaccines, America is facing the problem experts thought we’d have all along: demand for the vaccine is outstripping supply.

Why it matters: The Trump administration’s call for states to open up vaccine access to all Americans 65 and older and adults with pre-existing conditions may have helped massage out some bottlenecks in the distribution process, but it’s also led to a different kind of chaos.

Woman who allegedly stole laptop from Pelosi's office to sell to Russia is arrested

Photo: FBI

A woman accused of breaching the Capitol and planning to sell to Russia a laptop or hard drive she allegedly stole from Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office was arrested in Pennsylvania's Middle District Monday, the Department of Justice said.

Driving the news: Riley June Williams, 22, is charged with illegally entering the Capitol as well as violent entry and disorderly conduct. She has not been charged over the laptop allegation and the case remains under investigation, per the DOJ.