After weeks of speculation, Amazon has launched in Australia.

The American retail giant has started taking orders and shipping from its new 24,000-square-metre warehouse in Melbourne’s Dandenong South.

To attract Christmas shoppers, the site is offering free shipping on orders over $49.

Amazon Australia currently covers 23 product categories including books, music, electronics and kitchen goods. It’s unknown if and when Amazon Fresh – the companies fresh food delivery service – will launch here.

Amazon Australia was expected to launch last month to coincide with the Black Friday sales. The hype has been, to put it mildly, intense. The Australian Financial Review said the launch “will trigger the biggest shake-up in retail in a generation.”

Amazon's arrival will mean a single online retailer offering fast, cheap access to hundreds of thousands of products, without the premium currently paid to international online stores. Essentially, Amazon plans to do it cheaper, faster, and with more options than anyone else.

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Read our take on what the launch means for you, and what it might mean for thousands of independent producers and makers: Amazon is Here.