Wednesday, June 25, 2014
What I think about Amazon's Kindle Phone
Amazon has been dealing with mobile devices for a very long time now , the Kindle series of E Readers have been highly successful , but with the rise of low priced tablets , Amazon knew that the Days of the E-reader are numbered . The company adapted to the situation and launched the Amazon Kindle Fire , which for its time , was one of the fastest devices devices to come out with a then High end -Dual core processor , the price of $199 made it a instant hit .Amazon rode on this low price-high end spec platform until last week when they launched their first smartphone ,The Amazon Fire Phone , which being priced at $649 off contract ($200 for a 2year contract on AT&T) makes it a definite No-No to the average smartphone buyer , but As far as Amazon is concerned ,the Fire phone is not about selling a phone , its about making a statement , or let's say , setting a foundation for future devices , but in order to do that , the foundation must be firm , people usually pay thousands to buy items made by companies that have a social status attached to them , it doesn't matter whether you buy Apple or HTC , the fact that people like to show off their new expensive toy will continue to exist until the end of time, But what if you make something that costs just as much as those high end models, except for the brand ? Will people pay their hard earned cash for something that is made by Amazon ? .And in that sense , Amazon has really started to play with Fire , literally , pricing will definitely kill this device , or will it ?...
The Darwinian term "Survival of the fittest" can be applied to the smartphone market as well . If you look back a few years , many small companies like Notion Ink , fusion garage and even giants like HP and Microsoft made devices that were technically "dead on arrival" , without cutting edge features and the latest specs , the competition sailed past as these brilliant but failed concepts sank . Amazon ,unlike their not so successful peers at Barnes and Noble , managed to land a perfect hit with the Kindle Fire series , these inexpensive tablets brought fear into the hearts of Apple and Google , prompting a quick response in the form of their own Mini-Tablets , even sales figures represent this , Although Amazon is not king of the hill in terms of Tablet sales , they do hold a significant portion of the tablet space for themselves .But now , things have started to change , With the rise of the Phablet (huge smartphones) the mini tablets are slowly becoming "too small to be a tablet" ,And very few people opt for large screen tablets , Amazon , like its competition knows this , so as tablet sales shrink , they need to put their toes into the smartphone market or get overrun by the overly competitive tech market . And so the Fire phone was born . A quick look at the spec shows us that the Amazon Fire phone is powered by a Snapdragon 800 chip ,2GB of Ram and a 720p display with Amazon's hit-or-miss user interface , all of that sounds good , but its not great ,when you consider that the specs are more than a year old ,and this is certainly a long way behind the current top dog smartphones from Samsung , HTC,LG, Sony and Apple. The fire phone however makes up for it with gimmicky features such as a Dynamic display which offers something like a glass less 3D effect when you tilt the display , the rear camera is optically stabilized with 13 MP and has a glass back which makes it look a bit like a iPhone or Device from the Xperia Z line .All that is good too , but personally , I feel the biggest flaw comes from the software side ,As you already know , Amazon makes most of its cash by selling stuff online and sending targeted ads , the Fire phone is probably the biggest data mining asset for company as you will surely get a curated AppStore and a closely cookied browser, and you also get Amazons own shopping features in the phones main camera that detects bar codes and brands (kind of like Sonys Info eye feature , except for the shopping part ) with instant prices and comparisons , so basically the phone feels more like a shopping mall catalogue , with a phone attached to it rather than a attempt to make a decent phone , this prospect might be good for some , but it will surely scare many buyers off in the process . To me , this phone is nothing more than a decent attempt by Amazon to promote their services even more , and targeted advertising is a billion dollar industry , so The Fire Phone , even though it will probably go flat in terms of sales will surely set the foundation for Amazons shopping based mobile devices .
Written by Rakitha For MasHD