It has been several years since Amazon discontinued their Fire Phone and they might be ready to try entering the phone market again, if a report by Gadgets360 is to be believed. The publication claims Amazon “is working on a new lineup of smartphones branded as Ice, according to two sources familiar with the matter.” Unlike Amazon’s Prime-exclusive phones, which it works in conjunction with phone manufacturers to offer, this new phone will carry Amazon branding. It’s said the phone will have Google Mobile Services, such as Gmail and Google Play, which is a big departure from Amazon’s other Android-based products.
The new Amazon phone will initially be targeted towards emerging markets, such as India, instead of the US, where the Fire Phone was primarily sold. The phone is said to launch some time this year in at least India, which incidentally is the newest market to gain the Amazon Fire TV Stick.
A device being tested has a 5.2 to 5.5 inch display, 13 megapixel camera, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage, Snapdragon 435 CPU, and Android 7.1.1. Sources say the phone will likely be priced “at around Rs 6,000” which is around $93. It apparently does not have any Alexa capabilities, which would make sense since Alexa is not yet available on any device in India.
Amazon would certainly love to lay claim to a portion of the phone market. While the Fire Phone was by no means a terrible device, its very public failure will certainly cast a shadow on any new Amazon branded phone. Starting with a modest phone in emerging markets could be a good strategy to inch their way into the phone market again.