My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: US$199 Amazon Fire smartphone is Amazon Prime member's Nirvana – Shopping by Nodding your Head and Finding Waldo

Thursday, July 3, 2014

US$199 Amazon Fire smartphone is Amazon Prime member's Nirvana – Shopping by Nodding your Head and Finding Waldo

Amazon launched the US$199 Amazon Fire smartphone to much fanfare and admiration as stated in “Amazon delivers long-rumoured Fire Phone smartphone”, published June 18, 2014 10:59 AM PDT by Donna Tam, CNET News and “Amazon Announces The $199 Fire Phone, The First Smartphone With Head-Tracking Technology”, published June 18, 2014 by Matt Burns, Techcrunch.

This was the much rumoured Amazon smartphone finally come to life which I’d predicted a loooong tome ago, as far back as 2012 as I’d predicted in my blog article entitled Amazon set to launch smartphone in Fourth Quarter of 2012AD - The App Economy and the Increasing Importance of Digical Content”.

That expectation heightened for me when the US$99 Amazon Fire TV came out and was a success, prompting may to speculate that a smartphone would make a better remote. Thus a Amazon smartphone must be in the wings as I’d again predicted in my blog article entitled Amazon Fire TV is a bonafide hit and is out-of-stock according to Amazon - The Bamboo powered smartphone running Amazon apps cometh”.

It’s was a real media circus, the Amazon Fire smartphone and a lot more involved than the companion US$99 Amazon Fire TV  as described in my blog article entitled “Amazon launches Amazon Fire TV Set Top and Gaming Console - Amazon Prime Delight challenges Apple iTV, enflames Cord-Cutter's Nirvana portending Console Gaming Renaissance”.

CNN did an article; so too did the Los Angeles Times as noted in the articles “Amazon unveils 3-D Fire Phone”, published June 18, 2014: 5:22 PM ET By James O'Toole, CNN Money
and “Amazon unveils Fire smartphone”, published JUNE 18, 2014, 7:16 PM By  ANDREA CHANG, CHRIS O'BRIEN, LA Times  respectively.

So too did the Wall Street Journal and even on the Geezam blog as noted in the articles “Amazon Unveils 'Fire Phone' Smartphone”, published June 18, 2014 9:14 p.m. ET by GREG BENSINGER, Wall Street Journal and “Introducing Fire, the First Smartphone Designed by Amazon” by Kelroy of the Geezam blog.

Heck, it even made the Jamaica Gleaner as noted in “Bezos: Fire phone offers 'something different'”, published Sunday June 22, 2014, The Jamaica Gleaner. Clearly, this smartphone was hotly expected. Not certain why, as it’s already clear who it’s really geared for: Amazon Prime customers, who shelled out US$99 for 1 year free 1 day shipping.

Amazon creates a new Magic Wand – Shopping by Nodding your Head and Finding Waldo

Now that the Media circus has cooled off, time for me to do what I do best; basic analysis of the future! I already did one such in the form of a extra-long editorial on the Geezam blog entitled “Amazon Fire is a Volkswagen for Amazon Prime subscribers that’ll drive shop-on-the-go Online Obsession”. First it’s good to note there are two Amazon Fire smartphones available on a two (2) year contract on Telecom Provider AT&T:

1.      32GB version for US$200
2.      64GB version for US$300 

Aside from this, they both have the same specs. Here’s the specs compared to the Gold Standard, the Apple iPhone as so gloriously presented in “AMAZON FIRE PHONE VS. IPHONE 5S: AMAZON’S FIRST PHONE SIDE-BY-SIDE WITH APPLE’S GOLD STANDARD”, published June 22, 2014 By Williams Pelegrin, DigitalTrends:

So the specs bandwagon aside, it’s clear from reading the above article, this isn’t an Apple iPhone competitor, despite is pseudo-Apple stylings. Rather, it’s aimed more at the online shopper being able to more conveniently buy what they see around them.

Firefly dips into Amazon massive image database, allowing Amazon Prime members toting an Amazon Fire smartphone to literally buy what they see in an interactive game of Find Waldo. It’s basically a Yelp-esque Native Application but for buying, not Restaurant review hunting as draws upon image recognition technology connected to databases most likely hosted in their AWS (Amazon Web Services).

Aside from recognizing printed phone numbers, email, web addresses, QR and bar codes it's also has a pretty good ear for Music and an eye for Movies, being as it able to recognize them once samples and give the user the option to purchase the very same title. Retailers are gonna love this phone, as it effectively a shopping scanner in your hand that says “buy” every time you spot something, a boost to impulsive buying as described in “Amazon's Fire Smartphone Is a Game Changer - For Retailers”, published  6/19/2014 @ 3:24PM by Adam Hartung, Forbes.

Dynamic Perspective makes Map Reading fun again. Tracking the relative position of your head to the smartphone, it allows you to get a better view of the objects you view on the Amazon Fire smartphone as described in “Amazon Fire Phone's Dynamic Perspective offers a new angle on smartphone displays”, published June 18, 2014 11:58 AM PDT by Nate Ralph , CNET News. It also provides an excellent way to scroll e-books, assuming you like reading them on such a small screen instead of the 7” Amazon Kindle Fire. Four Cameras on each corner of the Amazon Fire smartphone power this device, making it able to recognize whichever way your head is tilted relative to your smartphone.

Amazon Fire smartphone – A New Family Member to reward Amazon Prime Subscribers

So why did Amazon choose to add yet another sibling to the Fire Family? Possibly because they knew the Amazon Prime users, having shelled out US$99 for the perk of free one day Shipping wanted one more shopaholic’s tool aside from the Amazon Kindle Fire Tablet as described in my Geezam blog article entitled “Amazon is Legally Blonde as the Kindle Fire HD Upgrade is CEO Bezos’s Confessions of an Online Shopaholic”.

But in such a tough and crowded field, how well will the Amazon Fire smartphone do as asked in the article “Friday Poll: Will you buy an Amazon Fire Phone?”, published June 20, 2014 by Amanda Kooser, CNET News? I see it doing well among Amazon Prime subscribers but not necessarily among Amazon users, mainly because that functionality can be done by the Amazon App that you can get from the Apple iTunes or Google Play Store.

As soon as it’s on more Telecom Networks aside from AT&T, sales for this excuse to shop exclusively on Amazon, the ultimate trip for any true fan of Amazon, it will become a big seller for the EMC3 – Earth’s Most Customer-Centric Company! 
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