Amazon has finally announced its first smartphone, the Amazon Fire Phone. And here’s where you can find out all about it.
A 3D screen!
The headline news story of the Amazon Fire Phone is its 3D screen. It won’t make you dizzy either, but it is pretty amazing. Tilt the phone and the screen moves with you.
It’s not just to look good though. Wallpapers will move around, menus will pop open with settings in apps, pages will flip while you’re reading a book, and you can even look at maps from a different perspective. It’ll work with games too, once developers have got their heads around it.
How does the 3D feature work?
Obviously there’s some clever software, but Amazon has built a special screen. In each corner of the screen are small, infrared cameras, four in total. They’re constantly on and tell the phone where your face is in relation to the screen. It can then work out when you’re tilting it and moving around, and move the screen so it looks like it’s three dimensional.
The great thing about the cameras being infrared is that they should work in the dark. This means all those great 3D features will work wherever and whenever you are.
Firefly app, for buying anything you see
As this is the Amazon phone, it makes it easy to buy anything. Just point the camera at it. The Firefly app can recognise 100 million items, with everything from email address, TV episodes, songs and products. Then it’ll find the item and let you buy it at the lowest price. There’s a dedicated Firefly button on the side of the phone, so just press it and the Fireplay app is launched.
Super bright 4.7” screen, ideal for reading
The Amazon Fire Phone is designed to be great for reading with a specially bright screen. It’s one of the brightest around, making it easy to read even in bright sunshine. Holiday reading will be no problem.
13MP camera that always gives blur-free photos
A high megapixel count means the Fire Phone’s camera gives great detailed photos. But it’s the optical image stabilisation (OIS) feature that’s really impressive. It constantly makes sure the camera is steady inside the phone, so even if you’re moving about, your photos won’t be blurry.
Having trouble? Use Mayday to get help in under 15 seconds
Mayday is a great Amazon service that’ll be built into the Fire Phone. It’s a customer support feature that lets you connect with an Amazon representative to help you with any issue you might have with your phone. While it’s meant to get you help in under 15 seconds, the average is actually just 9.75 seconds!
Dual stereo speakers for excellent sound
When it comes to sound, stereo speakers are a must on smartphones. The Amazon Fire Phone gives stereo sound when in landscape. It comes with Dolby Digital Plus for Virtual Surround too, excellent for movies.
Free unlimited photo storage on Amazon Cloud Drive
Take all the photos you want and store them on the Amazon Cloud Drive for free! It means you’ll be able to get to your photos from any device that can get online.
Free Amazon Prime membership for a year
This was a rumoured feature, and Amazon has made it true. Get the Amazon Fire Phone and it’ll come with 12 months of Amazon Prime service. And customers that already have it will get an extra month on their current subscription.
Nokia HERE maps built in
HERE Maps is on all Nokia Lumia phones and it’s brilliant because it’s free, comes with voice guided navigation, and has maps for practically any country in the world. And once you’ve downloaded the maps, they’ll work offline, even rerouting without an internet connection. And the Amazon Fire Phone has them out of the box.
Can I get one?
Not at the moment. Amazon has only announced they’ll be selling the Amazon Fire Phone in the United States, and we’re not sure if it will come to the UK. Judging by the Amazon Kindle Fire tablets though, a UK launch seems likely next year if the phone is successful.
How much is it?
In America it’s priced at $199 for the 32GB model and $299 for the 64GB model, as long as you get to a 2 year contract. Without a contract and unlocked the Fire Phone is $649 for the 32GB version and $749 for the 64GB.