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Amazon Fire Phone release date, specs, price and availability

Updated Everything you need to know about Amazon's debut smartphone
Thu Jun 19 2014, 14:32

Amazon Fire PhoneONLINE RETAIL GIANT Amazon launched its debut smartphone, the Amazon Fire Phone, at an event in Seattle on 18 June, as it looks to challenge the likes of Apple and Samsung in the ever-competitive mobile market.

We've rounded up everything we know about the Amazon Fire Phone, including details about its price, release date and specifications. Keep this page bookmarked as we'll be updating it when we hear more. 

Release date
The Amazon Fire Phone has been given a prompt release date, with Amazon having opened up pre-orders for the handset before it starts shipping in the States on 25 July. There's no word yet regarding UK availability, although Amazon is urging punters to "stay tuned."

Price
Despite speculation that the Fire Phone would priced similarly to the Google Nexus 5, it will in fact cost as much as an iPhone 5S or Galaxy S5 handset.

In the US, the Amazon Fire Phone 32GB model has been priced at $649 without a contract, while the higher-capacity 64GB model will fetch $749. On contract, the device will fetch $199 and $299, respectively, on a 24 month AT&T contract, with a years free Amazon Prime subscription chucked in with it for good measure.

There is no word on UK pricing yet.

Specs
The Fire Phone's specs are fairly average when compared to its competitors, although Amazon has added a bunch of unique features which it hopes will win over buyers.

Chief among these is the handset's "Dynamic Perspective" 3D display. While the handset's 4.7in 720p HD screen is pale in comparison to the displays found on the Galaxy S5 and LG G3, for example, this three-dimensional feature makes use of the smartphones four front-facing camera to track a users' iris and head movements to create a 3D effect on the screen. 

Firefly is another of the handset's unique features, although it perhaps is one not many users were asking for. The feature can be activated at any time using a physical shortcut key on the smartphone's side, and grants users a variety of powers.

For example, Firefly lets people use the Fire Phone's camera to recognise and draw information from Amazon's database about a number of things, including books, DVDs, phone numbers, QR codes, CDs, URLS, famous artwork and barcodes. If the product is on the Amazon database, there is - of course - an option to purchase it automatically. The feature can also use the Fire Phone's microphone to access information on music or television shows as they are playing.

Beyond that, the Amazon Fire Phone is fairly standards - besides its heavily customised Android UI. The handset arrives running an overhauled version of Google's Android 4.4 Kitkat operating system, essentially turning the device into a one-stop-shop for Amazon's own services. This forked software also revokes access to Google Play, so users will have to download apps from Amazon's own Appstore instead.

In terms of physical specifications, as rumours had suggested, the Amazon Fire Phone touts a 4.7in HD 720p screen, powered by a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor backed up by 2GB RAM. While it features a unique front-facing camera set up, there's a standard 13MP camera on the Fire Phone's rear, complete with autofocus, flash and optical image stabilisation.

The Amazon Fire Smartphone also features either 32GB or 64GB of built-in, non-expandable storage, 4G LTE support, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac and a 2,400mAh battery, which Amazon claims will offer up 22 hours of talk time. µ

 

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