The Wall Street Journal this morning reports that Amazon “has opened an online freight brokerage platform to connect shippers with available trucks, offering service in five Eastern states. That makes Amazon the latest business to bring significant new financial backing to industrial shipping with plans to digitize the inefficient, sometimes cumbersome business of booking freight transport.”

The move represents a deeper commitment to logistics “as it tries to tamp down transportation costs ahead of a pricey push into one-day shipping, raising potential concerns for freight operators that may end up competing for business with the e-commerce giant that many count as a significant customer.”

Amazon Logistics, the story says, “is offering beta service for truckload shipments in Connecticut, Maryland, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania” and also is providing “instant rate quotes through an online portal, freight.amazon.com, saying users can ‘tap into the scale of Amazon as we extend our carrier network to give you best-in-class service at great rates’.”

One transportation analyst tells the Times that “Amazon’s published rates appeared to be 4% to 5% below those on the trucking spot market, where companies book last-minute transportation.”