Amazon cuts the price of its Fire smartphone. Is its attempt to enter the smartphone market in trouble?
Amazon has cut the price of its Fire smartphone again in a further effort to tempt mobile users onto its device.
It comes amid questions about whether e-commerce giant has the ability to compete against established players in a highly competitive market.
The Amazon Fire smartphone is sold in the UK at £399, but for one day only (until midnight tonight), Amazon has reduced the price of its 32GB Fire smartphone down to £99. The 64GB model costs £149.
While the device is sold ‘SIM-Free’, it should be noted that the handset is actually locked to the O2 network. The device also boasts a customised version of Android. Reviews of the US version have criticised the handset’s sluggish performance, poor battery life and the fact that it relies on Amazon’s own app store, which has a fraction of the software available via Google Play.
But the Fire smartphone boasts an impressive spec sheet, including 3D interaction. It includes 4.7in HD (720p, 315ppi) screen, 2.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor, Adreno 330 graphics, 2GB of RAM, stereo speakers, the latest 802.11ac Wi-Fi, 4G LTE, Bluetooth 3.0 and NFC. There are also a 2.1Mp front- and 13Mp rear cameras.
Amazon’s smartphone entered the UK market last September, but it arrived on these shore amid reports of sluggish sales in the United States, which prompted a significant price cut of the 32GB handset in the US down to 99 cents with a two-year contract.
Earlier this month, Amazon announced it is pulling its mobile payments app, Amazon Wallet, just six months after its launch.
The question remains whether the Fire smartphone price cut signals Amazon’s attempt to clear inventory levels before the arrival of a new smartphone. Or whether Amazon is reconsidering its smartphone entry altogether.
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