Amazon, with its tremendous expertise in the tablet production under the Kindle line-up has taken another step by announcing its first ever Smartphone Fire to integrate its customers lives at every possible moment. The rumors about this newly released smart phone predates back to 2012, when there were some rumors and hints regarding a smartphone from Amazon, but neither there is a credible source nor an official statement.
Amazon claims that the Fire phone is the result of four years of research and development and offers some innovative features like Dynamic Perspective with 3D like UI and Firefly, which the company claims as the two new breakthrough technologies that allow you to see and interact with the world through a whole new lens. Dynamic Perspective boasts tilt gestures that allow you to trigger actions by simply moving the phone. For instance, you can just tilt the device to scroll inside the e-book reader.
On the other hand, Firefly uses the phone’s camera and microphone to recognize the things around you and quickly matches them with its huge database to offer you great deal of information about it. For instance if you point the camera at a book, it searches it and if available you’re automatically offered the option to purchase it from Amazon. The mic functionality works the same way with songs and movies. Amazon seems to be very keen with this feature as it provided a dedicated Firefly button (also the camera button) on the left side of the device.
Being a retail giant itself, Amazon has been too particular about its content services by offering movies, TV shows, music, books, magazines, and newspapers. Amazon is offering a limited time Prime services for one year and offers unlimited streaming and downloads of its huge media database. Another noteworthy feature is the Mayday which allows you to communicate to the Amazon expert for help via live video chat just at a button’s distance.
Apart from the features, the Fire phone offers a decent specs which includes a 4.7 inch IPS display with 720p resolution (offers around 315 ppi) which falls just short of the phablet range and the display provides 590 nits of maximum brightness which is good enough for external usage and provides gorilla glass for protection on both sides. The device measures 139.2 x 66.5 x 8.9 mm and weighs 160 gms, which is not exceptional but will do.
The Fire Phone is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 quad-core chipset which is clocked at 2.2 GHz coupled with 2 GB of RAM. Graphic related processes are backed by the Adreno 330 GPU which can handle most the graphic intensive operations. Two variants of Fire with 32GB and 64GB storage options are confirmed along with free cloud storage for all Amazon content, as well as to store photos taken on the device.
Amazon offers a 13 MP rear camera with f/2.0 5-element wide aperture lens and supports multi-frame HDR, auto focus, optical image stabilization and comes with a LED flash. There is also a 2.1 MP front-facing camera that support 1080p HD video recording at 30 fps, same as its rear camera. The device has support for 4G LTE, NFC, GPS, GLONASS, Bluetooth 3.0, WiFi, USB 2.0 which are more common for a device like this.
Fire phone is equipped with the common sensors like gyroscope, accelerometer, magnetometer, barometer, proximity sensor and ambient light sensor, but has an extra sensor for Dynamic Perspective feature. The device will be backed by a non-removable 2400 mAh battery that claims to offer up to 22 hours of talktime and 285 hours of standby time.
- 4.7 inch IPS display with 720p resolution (~ 315 ppi)
- Corning Gorilla glass 3 on both sides
- Dimensions: 139.2 x 66.5 x 8.9 mm
- Weight: 160 gms
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 Quad-core @ 2.2 GHz
- 2 GB RAM
- Adreno 330 GPU
- 32/64 GB internal storage
- 13 MP rear camera with LED flash
- 2.1 MP front-facing camera
- 4G LTE Support
- Supports NFC, GPS, GLONASS, Bluetooth 3.0, WiFi, USB 2.0
- 2400 mAh non-removable battery
At the bottom line the Fire phone is not a great option when coming to the pricing tag, at $649 without contract, it is almost near to the Galaxy S5 which comes at $700 and offers more valuable features. The devices packs a Snapdragon 800 processor which is a bit outdated compared to the devices at same price tag. Fire phone also lacks the support to Bluetooth 4.0 and USB 3.0 features which is a norm on the current smartphones.
The Fire phone is exclusive to AT&T which limits its reach to all users, and AT&T offers 32 GB variant of Fire phone at a price tag of $199 for a two-year contract. But Amazon seems to sweeten the deal by offering Amazon goodies and Prime services for free for a limited period. So we have to wait a bit to see how users respond to the Amazon’s Fire Phone.