Amazon’s plan for world domination is going swimmingly: They have a massive store for everything, a tablet, a streaming TV box, a drone army, and now they are launching a 3D smartphone to ship in September, the first of its kind.
A trusted tech source, BGR revealed what they say are the first exclusive photos of the Amazon phone prototype, as well as some details about the device's specs. According to their sources, the phone will be 4.7 inches long, diagonally, (similar to the Moto X, but smaller than the HTC One and Samsung's Galaxy 5); have 720p HD resolution; 2GB of RAM; and a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. It will also power Mayday, Amazon’s specialized, personalized customer service system.
Most interestingly, it has six cameras. The two main cameras are on the back of the device (14 megapixels) and there is also front facing camera. There will also have four other front facing cameras, on each of the corners of the phone. These are low power infrared cameras, that according to BGR’s source, will create the 3D experience without the aid of glasses. “The device’s extra cameras are used to track the position of the user’s face and eyes in relation to the phone’s display. This allows Amazon’s software to make constant adjustments to the positioning of on-screen elements, altering the perspective of visuals on the screen.” The 3D effect will also appear in the main applications, such as maps, the book store and music store, and Amazon's digital market.
The online shopping giant has slowly ,but surely been moving towards the smartphone world. Their Kindle Fire has successfully allowed the brand to build up their own app store and beef up their sales of digital content. However, they still trail behind their competitors, mostly because they lack a strong mobile component. On April 11, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced that the Amazon Appstore, which launched in March 2011, had over 200,000 apps available, serving 200 countries. By comparison, there are currently 1,200,198 apps in the Google Play store, which launched October 2008. Apple launched their app store in July 2008, and it currently has over a million apps as well. Amazon’s upcoming smartphone will likely skyrocket the number of apps available to their existing customers. Based on the growth of their competitors, it is possible that Amazon could be in the millionaire app club in two to three years.
Amazon has set itself up for a perfect phone launch, as well. They have a successful streaming product to incorporate into the phone, a growing app store, and a growing business in Amazon Prime, which (despite the recent price increase) has created a loyal customer base — perfect for marketing this newest device and the many other Amazon products it can deliver.
As for the actual look and feel of the phone, it isn't clear yet, as Amazon has not officially revealed the details. The images obtained by BGR show a bulky, boxy design, but this is due to the protective shell on the outside of the device that is meant to hide key parts of design from leaks. (Like this one, oops.) While there is much about Amazon’s new product remaining to be revealed, the phone is definitely coming, and currently aiming for a September release date. We can only hope it will be delivered by a friendly drone.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.