Fire Phone

Early reviews dump cold water on Amazon Fire Phone

At a media event on June 18, Amazon entered the smartphone fray with the Fire Phone. Sure the company is 7 years late to a market that is largely dominated by a handful of heavyweights, but it hoped the device’s unique features would set it apart.

Tonight, the embargo lifted on early reviews of the handset, and they aren’t pretty. The consensus is that the aforementioned features—tilt scrolling, etc.—are gimmicky at best, and the phone itself is a pain to use. Read on for other initial reactions…

Watch Amazon’s inaugural TV ad for its upcoming Fire Phone

Last night, the online retail giant Amazon has begun airing the first television commercial for its Fire smartphone ahead of its debut next Friday in the United States.

Rather than take jabs at competitors as Amazon did with its launch ads for the Fire tablets, the Fire Phone commercial instead zeroes in on the fact that it comes with a full year of Prime membership, bundled free of charge.

It’s a major selling point which cleverly takes advantage of Amazon’s diverse interests in digital media and its continuos focus on undercutting the value proposition of its rivals…

This is Fire Phone, Amazon’s first smartphone

Amazon today unveiled the Fire Phone, its first smartphone. The device features a 4.7-inch screen, 2.2 GHz quad-core processor, 2 GB of RAM, 13-megapixel rear-facing camera, Adreno 330 graphics and more. It runs a custom version of Android called Fire OS 3.5. The smartphone also has several other interesting features, including a 3D adaptive perspective mode, Firefly, ASAP predictive caching, MayDay support, screen mirroring and more.

In terms of design, the Fire Phone has a Gorilla Glass 3 screen, rubber frame and glass back. Meanwhile, the handset has aluminum buttons and injection-molded steel connectors to ensure a tight and precise fit and beautiful trim rings. Amazon says it cares deeply about the chamfered edges on its USB connectors. That’s just the tip of the iceberg…