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Long-standing rumors of an 'Amazon phone' could finally come true

Amazon is gearing up to release multiple smart phones manufactured by HTC, according to people familiar with the company's plans. Sources of the Financial Times claim that a range of phones are in the works, with at least one that is in advanced stages. The phone is said to be released as early as the end of this year, but launch plans have changed before and may be pushed back again until 2014.

Amazon has traditionally used white label manufacturers for its Kindle devices, holding all branding to itself. The move to partnering with HTC for manufacturing is something that HTC is well-accustomed to, but it's unclear what Amazon has to gain from having the HTC logo on its devices.

Presumably the partnership could be mutually beneficial if Amazon targets the product correctly. Amazon could potentially leverage HTC's brand recognition and history of dealing with wireless carriers, and an Amazon-driven phone that sells extremely well would be a boon for HTC's currently struggling financial situation.

Source: FT

There are 47 comments

ReggieTee says:

Oh HTC..sigh...

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DWR_31 says:

Google phones = You use them to "Search".
Amazon phones = You use them to "Shop".

HTC will bring "Quality Recognition" to Amazon's devices.

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MarkSeven says:

No no no HTC .. Go stand in the corner!

greasyspoon says:

This is great! Amazon outs super cheap phones, albeit heavily skinned, but with great content and specs; and HTC returns to its OEM ways that made it so awesome. Could this be the win-win HTC was looking for?

mstrblueskys says:

This! Hopefully! :)

Though... Facebook didn't really pan out how it could have. We'll see what the Kindle phone (maybe even a Kindle) can do for HTC.

someguy01234 says:

I think it will have more success than the Facebook phone, Kindle brand is well recognized by the public, they have a huge userbase, and being Amazon they'll probably keep the price low similar to Nexus devices. I don't know how the carrier situation will be like, but would be nice if it's unlocked, that and low price + free shipping from Amazon website it'll probably sell like hotcakes.

I'll skip this one though, my experience with Kindle OS have not been very good, involving creating my own factory cable to hack it and put Google Play Store on. The software is just to restrictive for me, but it haven't stopped it's sales.

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Soeasy says:


Maybe they can also produce a higher end tablet.

movielover76 says:

Agreed, the new kindles are some of the most popular tablet's out there.
This could be a major saving grace to HTC, I hope it helps them out.
Though I'm sure this won't interest most of us because Kindle's run such a controlled and restricted android like experience

heathroi says:

cos facebook offers nothing in comparison with amazon.

still1 says:

it will be much more worse than facebook phone and HTC will doom if that happens.

i will totally stop supporting HTC... I have made at least 4 people buy HTC One phone over few months imagine support for HTC drops from 10000 people it will go to doom

BigKenW says:

Wait what?

rampage1979 says:

I think it worth a shot HTC disn't have many other choices right now and the popularity of the kindle tablets could help sell with some marketing from Amazon.

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A895 says:

If its good why not? I was thinking of getting a kindle anyways.

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I'm curious to see how this will end up...

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Because they didn't learn their lesson the first or second time they partnered with Facebook. What's next? A twitter phone (Call it the HTC Tweeter)? An eBay phone? A Yahoo Phone? (This, I may actually be for) Give me a break... I say this a an big fan of HTC devices. MAKE PHONES THAT MATTER AND THAT STAND OUT, like your HTC One.

hmmm says:

They barely getting by the way it is. I am sure they will try all those things before going bankrupt.

antw081 says:

Problem is that the ONE isn't selling well.
I can't see how HTC is going to be able to top that design.

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An Amazon powered phone is not nearly as ridiculous as you're making it out. They already have a successful tablet line so it's not such a crazy idea for them to want action in the mobile market.

Amir47 says:

Watch them teach everybody how it's done. Release 3 phones 3 sizes all at once(4.3" 4.7" 5.5"). Not 6 months apart.

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BB_Bmore says:

I'll reserve my comment until I see what Amazon does.

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Nreeldeep says:

Uh... HTC has already done that. And actually HTC was taught that nobody wants them. Not with an HTC logo on them anyway.

Amir47 says:

The One X/S/V/SV line? forgot about those lol

Is this why HTC hasn't been on their game recently? They've been too busy working on Amazon phones?

hmmm says:

I suppose with HTC they get a company that knows phones and with HTC in the position they are in they can offer Amazon those phones for cheap.

dchawk81 says:

Partnering with HTC would help Amazon get in carriers' stores.

I don't have numbers but I'd guess that's where a vast majority of USA cell phone sales occur.

centerwaters says:

these Amazon/HTC phones will have:

(1) built-in app for Amazon Prime Video streaming (which is not available to any Android device at this time)

(2) similar pricing to comparable phones from Samsung, LG, or HTC... Amazon will not sell these phones as "cheap" phones

Amir47 says:

I'm thinking slightly more expensive than Nexus Phones

hodan says:

It would make a nice family with the new kindles. It might also save HTC, so there's that.

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markdowd84 says:

I think this could work because of the popularity of the Kindle fire. I don't think HTC has brand recognition, though. If that were true then people other than Android fans would actually recognize the HTC One. They don't. People only recognize the iPhone and the Galaxy S series. Rather, I would say Amazon needs HTC's expertise in this area because HTC does make great phones even if people don't buy them.

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Ry says:

Agreed. What's an HTC?

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hodan says:

It's the same as an Optimus Razor ZL

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dextorboot says:

My guess: all phones off contract. Kindle with or without Special Offers will determine price.

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bluesun3030 says:

Ohh HTC... First, you were a mess. Amazon, I don't know what you were thinking here.

Dreadcthulhu says:

Couldn't this get HTC in trouble with Google & the Open Handset Alliance rules? In order to follow the rules & include Google's apps, HTC can't ship phones with a forked version of Android. I know that kept Acer from shipping phones running Aliyun a while back. (Aliyun is a forked version of Android made by a Chinese company, Alibaba. Alibaba claims Aliyun isn't based on Android, but all the pirated Android apps on its app store beg to differ.)

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deeb215 says:

Go ahead HTC, get your flail on. I'm not a fan of the Amazon app-store so definitely count me out.

Ry says:

This fits with HTC's history though.

(What brand recognition?)

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mcgowan398 says:

This is kinda like what Google does with Nexus ®


L0N35T4R says:

Let me break it down for you;
You have a serious shopping problem if you need an Amazon phone.

That is all


Deveal2014 says:

Hope it works out in HTC favor ! No hate this way

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rudyy50 says:

I'm not an Amazon fan, but I hope HTC becomes a big success. Competition is good.

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randyw says:

Why does HTC keep asking for more problems?

antw081 says:

This has HTC First written all over it.

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BigKenW says:

I can tell you that use of this could be huge. My wife uses a Kindle for work travel all the time. If she could have Amazon Instant video on a 5" Kindle Phone, I would be shocked if she didn't want one.

ESPECIALLY if she can buy it at an affordable off contract price for use on Verizon.

The potential here for Amazon is amazing if they follow the Nexus model. The potential for HTC is even greater if they become a good partner to Amazon. Let's say the phone sells very well and a partnership is there. HTC could return as a market contender. In addition, if HTC continues to fail, Amazon could buy them.

Oh HTC. What do you do when you're already in the deep end? Make it even deeper.

MrSmith317 says:

I hope Amazon QC's the hell out of these phones. HTC always screws up one major feature..most notably the battery and if they manage to hit one out of the park it could be great for Amazon and HTC. My only caveat is that these phones won't use the Google services. What's the alternate for Maps or is Maps available via the Amazon app store?


Kindle Mini ?!? Probably some sort of bonus package like Free Amazon Prime for a year with unlimited movie and/or book subscription? Something like that I would guess... Just to please it's own Amazon customers and any new customer. Im sure they'll sell.

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I think this is great news. I personally love HTC phones. Seems to run better than Samsung. Check out the new released cell phones here