Amazon's ‘Project Aria’ smartphone: much cheaper than the iPhone?

Amazon's ‘Project Aria’ smartphone: much cheaper than the iPhone?With something stupid like two and a half years of conflicting Amazon smartphone rumours under our collective Mobo-belt, you’ll forgive us for shrugging at this latest story.

Yes, the Amazon smartphone is back, and we’re told it’ll be priced at a “fraction of the cost” of the iPhone.

Supposedly, last spring, Amazon held talks with potential hardware partners, and discussed strategies for a smartphone-based invasion across China and Europe.

That’s the story according to The Information, with credit going to “people who were involved in discussions” and a “confidential document”.

We’re told to use the codename “Project Aria”, which sounds dangerously close to “Project Ara” (Google’s modular phone thing), and is almost certainly not a homage to Slayer’s Tom Araya.

In terms of Amazon smartphone price, it’d supposedly be pitched at a “fraction of the cost” of the iPhone, which is pretty much what we’ve been hearing all along. At one point it was suggested that the Amazon smartphone might even be free, but Jeff Bezos told us to stop being silly.

The price could potentially be subsidised by Amazon Prime subscriptions, which recently rose from £49 to £79 annually in the UK, now including unlimited streaming of movies and TV with Amazon Prime Instant Video.

Team Bezos, predictably, is remaining tight-lipped about the Amazon smartphone, though it’ll almost certainly happen in some capacity. ETA at this rate: 2020AD.

Read more about: Android

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5 comments

JanSt / MOD  Mar. 15, 2014 at 16:05

Unless Pierre Omidyar decides to launch an eBay phone, the Amazon phone is the one thing I will most definitely not touch. Ever.

satchef1  Mar. 16, 2014 at 11:24

Two and a half years ago this could have been interesting. These days it's nothing special to launch a decent phone for less than the price of the iPhone. Why buy a Kindle Phone over a Moto G or Lumia 520?

JanSt / MOD  Mar. 16, 2014 at 13:20

Two and a half years ago this could have been interesting. These days it's nothing special to launch a decent phone for less than the price of the iPhone. Why buy a Kindle Phone over a Moto G or Lumia 520?

That, too... Yes.
Of course, Amazon may be in a position to strongarm networks into descounted/free data usage. Other than that? (and I'm not convinced they CAN...)

If you are unable to conveniently use Amazon services from ANY smartphone right now, then an Amaphone won't help you. And I doubt they can sell one cheaper than the Moto G

IndianaBlues  Mar. 17, 2014 at 10:25

If this does go ahead, the question should be "what is the fraction?"...
1/100?
1/10?
1/4?
1/2?
3/4?
9/10?
99/100?
1/1?
150/100?

Even if Amazon confirmed the rumour and the "fraction" price, there's no reason why it would need to be any cheaper (although I doubt they'd shoot themselves in the foot like that!!).

JanSt / MOD  Mar. 17, 2014 at 11:27

Well, I reckon it'd have to very cheap... I can't see why anyone would be interested in an Amazon phone otherwise? They conditioned their customers to expect free data on the 3G Kindles... hard to beat that out of them.

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