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Amazon Reportedly Launching Smartphone This Year 38

Posted by Soulskill
from the bookstores-building-gadgets dept.
According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, Amazon is working on a smartphone for release in the second half of the year. They're currently aiming to announce it by July and launch the end of September. One of the differentiating features of the phone is its capability to display 3-D images. "..the phone would employ retina-tracking technology embedded in four front-facing cameras, or sensors, to make some images appear to be 3-D, similar to a hologram." However, it may not be just a gimmick for 3-D movies and TV shows: "Sources tell Re/code that one advantage of this display will supposedly be that the phone can be moved from right to left to navigate, so a user can interact with the interface with only one hand." The report's sources say Amazon has been demonstrating the phone for developers in San Francisco and Seattle, but they're likely to have difficulty luring developers away from established platforms.
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Amazon Reportedly Launching Smartphone This Year

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  • by rolfwind (528248) on Saturday April 12, 2014 @09:56AM (#46733145)

    3D has been met between a variation of "MEH!" and "meh" after the initial oohs and ahs wore off for theaters and consoles and TVs. It's a feature people take but don't care about.

    What will help Amazon get into the game is if it's divorced from carriers and does better pricing on that front. Kinda like how a kindle can get (slow) internet connectivity elsewhere. If it can get people a smartphone for $30~ish a month voice and data. Then it will be cool and a game changer. Otherwise it's just another phone in an increasingly crowded marketplace.

    • by ArcadeMan (2766669) on Saturday April 12, 2014 @10:24AM (#46733253)

      Even at 30$ per month it's still too expensive. Basic plans are already that low if not lower, even in Canada.

      • Really? I mean on a decent network? In the US, I see the cheaper networks are usually the shitty ones.
        • We don't have "shitty networks". We have one to three networks, all the others are buying bandwidth from those. That's why all plans from all carriers are 95% alike in price, minutes, sms, data, etc.

    • If it can get people a smartphone for $30~ish a month voice and data. Then it will be cool and a game changer.

      You mean, like T-mobile with a SIM?

      • by quenda (644621)

        You mean, like T-mobile with a SIM?

        You mean, the US still has phones without SIMs? Locked to a carrier!?
        No wonder cell-phone plans are so expensive compared to the rest of the world then. (When most things are cheaper in the US.)
        Its sad. The US once led the world in antitrust law enforcement.

        • You mean, like T-mobile with a SIM?

          You mean, the US still has phones without SIMs? Locked to a carrier!? No wonder cell-phone plans are so expensive compared to the rest of the world then. (When most things are cheaper in the US.) Its sad. The US once led the world in antitrust law enforcement.

          The point was that you can get voice and data with a SIM for around $30. I did. I do. It wasn't that hard to figure out how.

          If there was that big a demand for it, it would happen more often. Apparently more than one factor is at work.

  • by SuperKendall (25149) on Saturday April 12, 2014 @10:02AM (#46733171)

    one advantage of this display will supposedly be that the phone can be moved from right to left to navigate, so a user can interact with the interface with only one hand.

    Well we all know what that means.

    • by narcc (412956)

      They're trying to catch up to Blackberry?

      They're masters of the one-handed interface.

  • by kruach aum (1934852) on Saturday April 12, 2014 @10:05AM (#46733199)

    in the slightest. It's like saying "In a movie theatre images are projected onto a screen, similar to the eye."

  • What we need is a phone that's free to use. The first company to achieve that goal wins the game.

  • You're still always gonna be the Walmart of the internet.
    • by BitZtream (692029)

      Walmart is far more honorable than Amazon in pretty much every way.

      Bezos and Ellison compete for biggest cheating asshole possible.

      • by mspohr (589790)

        Walmart and Amazon honorable?
        AFAIK both of these companies abuse and underpay their employees. No honor in working there. No honor in buying stuff there.

    • by chispito (1870390)
      ...and the Barnes and Noble, and the Target, and the Kohls, and the Nordstrom, and the Sears, and the Best Buy, and the Gamestop...

      You're still always gonna be the Walmart of the internet.

  • phone, more so than Google and even Facebook ... Amazon will do it.

    Scummiest company on the planet.

    • by noh8rz10 (2716597)

      What do you think this? I've always felt comfortable with my data at Amazon, much more so than Google or Facebook.

  • by sarysa (1089739) on Saturday April 12, 2014 @02:37PM (#46734863)
    Regarding this last statement:

    they're likely to have difficulty luring developers away from established platforms.

    Kindle is already built on top of Android, and Amazon has partnerships with Android developers already. It's also a time-proven platform that's becoming ever more insurmountable for anyone trying to get their own platform off the ground. (take Windows Phone 8, and Microsoft had a decade head start) With all that stated, why is TFA assuming that this new smartphone would have anything but Android as their backbone?
  • by cripkd (709136) on Saturday April 12, 2014 @07:01PM (#46736387) Homepage
    I'm pretty sure they track the pupil and/or the iris, not the retina.
    This is not for id purposes nor is this a James Bond movie.

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