Re/code backs up the WSJ in reporting Amazon (AMZN) is set to become a smartphone vendor. Like TechCrunch last October, the site states two phones are being prepped: A high-end device and a low-end product meant for emerging markets. The former is set to arrive sooner.
Not surprisingly, Amazon's phones are said to run on its custom version of Android (Fire OS), which means Google Play and other Google apps/services won't be included. Amazon's 3D display is expected to enable one-handed use by allowing users to navigate by moving the phone from right to left.
With Google Play having over 5x as many apps as the Appstore for Android, Amazon is reportedly wooing developers with money, AWS support, app pre-load deals, and other incentives - Microsoft and BlackBerry can relate. Amazon is also working on "a mechanism to automatically translate existing Android apps," but it's not ready yet.
"I don’t know how they’ll differentiate with Samsung," says one skeptical developer. With the smartphone market nearly 5x the size of the tablet market and still growing just as fast, Amazon might feel it needs to try.
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