Report: Amazon taking another shot at smartphones with "Ice"; Google apps included?

Report: Amazon taking another shot at smartphones with
After its Fire Phone ended up a flop in 2014, Amazon might be feeling confident enough to take on the smartphone industry one more time according to a new report published today. The incredible success of the Amazon Echo smart speaker, combined with the omnipresent AI assistant Alexa, has bolstered the company's presence in the tech industry. The latest rumor revolves around a new line of smartphones allegedly code named "Ice."

Part of the problem with the Fire was the use of a forked version of Android that did not include Google Mobile Services. That meant that the phone did not provide access to the Google Play Store, Gmail and other apps that most Android users take for granted. Amazon uses the same forked version of Android to run its line of tablets.

One of the handsets reportedly being tested carries a screen sized somewhere in between 5.2-inches and 5.5-inches. This model allegedly is equipped with 2GB of RAM, 16GB of native storage and has Android 7.1.1 pre-installed. A Snapdragon 435 chipset is under the hood, carrying an octa-core CPU and the Adreno 505 GPU. A fingerprint scanner is found in back, and the price of this particular model would be $93. Surprisingly, Amazon's Alexa was not found on the device even though it has turned up recently on other handsets like the HTC U11 (in certain regions). Still, the software employed on the phone is not the final version which means that Alexa could still be added before the phone is unveiled.

At this point, it isn't clear whether Amazon will use the Ice name to brand the new handsets. It certainly would be a way to announce to consumers that these are not the same Fire phones that sold less than 35,000 units after it launched in 2014. In the states, the handset launched as an AT&T exclusive. After a period of time, Amazon sold the phone for less than cost just to clear out the inventory from the warehouse.

source: Gadgets360

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16 Comments

1. Myphoneisonfire

Posts: 403; Member since: Sep 05, 2016

Meh...

2. sgodsell

Posts: 7187; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

I loved the 4 cameras on their first firephone. They just used a lower resolution HD display. At that time other flagships were offering full HD or higher displays. I thought the 3d effects looked cool using those four front cameras. However they only sold it in the US. They needed to sell their smartphones to other countries. They have the same problem right now with their Echo and Echo Dot. They don't sell them in other countries like Canada.

3. meanestgenius

Posts: 21769; Member since: May 28, 2014

What are you talking about? The Amazon Echo is also sold in Germany and the U.K. Last time I checked, those are "other countries". https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amazon_Echo

5. sgodsell

Posts: 7187; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

I hope they sell it in more places.

6. sgodsell

Posts: 7187; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

Oh, like the US, UK, and Germany are most countries?

7. meanestgenius

Posts: 21769; Member since: May 28, 2014

Who said anything about them being "most countries"? You said, and I quote: "They needed to sell their smartphones to other countries. They have the same problem right now with their Echo and Echo Dot. They don't sell them in other countries like Canada." NOWHERE in that statement that you made did you say "most countries". You said "other countries", and I posted a link in response to your false information proving that they sell the Echo in "other countries". You just can't help but take a shot at anything that's not Google-related, even if it means not doing the research first. Just accept that you were wrong and move on, just like you did before you edited your comment #5. Yeah, I caught that, lol.

8. meanestgenius

Posts: 21769; Member since: May 28, 2014

Oh, and for the record, despite its crappy sales, the Amazon Fire Phone was available in the same countries that the Echo devices are now available in: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fire_Phone You should do more research before commenting.

4. meanestgenius

Posts: 21769; Member since: May 28, 2014

I'd be willing to take a look at a new Amazon-branded smartphone, having purchased their first smartphone. The Amazon Fire Phone had some interesting features. The four cameras, the 3D effect because of them (Dynamic Perspective), the introduction of Amazon FireFly, and the MayDay button, which gave you 24 hour, one way video access to a live rep. I'm a fan of Amazon's services (being an Amazon Prime member). I actually installed Google Play Services onto my Fire Phone to get whatever apps that were not available in the Amazon App Store.

9. Doakie

Posts: 2478; Member since: May 06, 2009

With all the discounted Prime Exclusive phones like the BLU R1 HD and Moto G's I'm surprised they're wasting their time actually branding it themselves. Why don't they just stick the Amazon logo on those models that are Prime Exclusive?

10. Doakie

Posts: 2478; Member since: May 06, 2009

Duplicate post.

11. Doakie

Posts: 2478; Member since: May 06, 2009

Duplicate post...

12. smoked_2na unregistered

Are they going make the same mistake again by announcing it as an exclusive device? Does exclusive even matter anymore?

13. bighandssmallpockets

Posts: 99; Member since: Dec 13, 2011

I like the strategy. Start with a cheap phone and learn before trying to bust into the flagship category.

14. DFranch

Posts: 533; Member since: Apr 20, 2012

I'd take a look at an Amazon Phone if it has Google services. I really like my fire tablet. It would have to allow me to change the launcher to use Nova.

15. Rock_Hardwood

Posts: 117; Member since: May 11, 2015

Ice ice baby. Heh

16. avinash22i

Posts: 72; Member since: Nov 07, 2013

Just go the ONE PLUS ONE route give us premium hardware at VFM costs and promise us a guaranteed 3 year update cycle. With the purest Android with nothing on it except an Amazon APP and a KINDLE APP. Release just 2 phones a year, a 5 or 5.2 inches one and the other a 5.5 inches one with exactly 6 months between them. Slap an amazon logo at the back and market the living day lights of it, I mean use the AMAZON "might" every delivery that amazon delivers around the world should have an ad relating to the phone. Make it the next big thing. Say people who buy this phone get's a one year subscription of KINDLE UNLIMITED and AMAZON PRIME for free and also a 10% off on the next KINDLE purchase. Do that and sit back and relax while you look at people fight to lay their hands on your phones. It really is that simple.

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