Amazon wants to give away its smartphone free of charge (not)

By on September 7, 2013, 9:30 AM
amazon, free, smartphone, amazon prime, mobile phone

Update: Well, a rumor is just that, and two days later Amazon has responded to the source of the original rumor confirming they won't be selling a smartphone in 2013, and that if they decided to sell one later down the road, it won't be free.

Amazon’s oft rumored smartphone could eventually arrive as a freebie. That’s right, Amazon is reportedly considering giving their smartphone away free of charge according to unnamed sources as reported by former Wall Street Journal reporters Amir Efrati and Jessica E. Lessin.

The duo claim Amazon has talked with wireless carriers about offering the phone through traditional carrier channels but it would seem they ultimately want to offer the device on their own site as they don’t want to force people to sign a wireless contract to get it.

It’s unclear what sort of strings might be attached to the free phone offer but if I had to guess, it wouldn’t be out of the question to try and lure people to sign up for Amazon Prime. This service typically sells for $79 per year and offers multiple member perks including free two-day shipping and $3.99 per item overnight delivery on millions of Prime eligible items. Prime members in the US also enjoy free Kindle e-book rentals and Instant Video streaming which makes the service an all-around solid deal, especially if you are a frequent Amazon shopper.

Sources say Amazon is still trying to determine if the free model will work for hardware partners. For Amazon, however, it would make sense as they’ve traditionally sought to make money from content delivery rather than hardware sales.

Last we heard, Amazon was working on not one but two smartphones – one with a 3D display.




User Comments: 15

Got something to say? Post a comment
ikesmasher said:

Well im a happy prime suscriber, so if it had something to do with that id be awesome.

At the same time I feel bad giving amazon business, as they are still knocking over competition (geeks.com )

Guest said:

They must be making big $$ on Kindle fire and have found selling hardware at cost or below means profits after sale. Give away the phone and make $$ afterward.

Tokido said:

Free phones? Yes please.

MrAnderson said:

I'm interested to see what they do in the market?

Will the phones be unlocked?

Will the lock screen display ads on free phones?

Will the phone have a version of Kindle Fire instead of regular Android etc?

Oh and will they do a watch?! :P (okay I'm 1/4th joking on that one)

tonylukac said:

If the monthly bill is free, I'll take it.

1 person liked this | Khanonate said:

Well im a happy prime suscriber, so if it had something to do with that id be awesome.

At the same time I feel bad giving amazon business, as they are still knocking over competition (geeks.com )

I just went to geeks.com. I didn't know they've closed their online stores...

JC713 JC713 said:

The smartphone cost is not the issue for many. It is the cost of data and cellular service.

ET3D, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I'd buy that for a dollar. But free is better.

danhodge danhodge said:

Maybe they will sell it at breakeven like the Kindle, but not free, no way. I can't see them doing that at all.

tipstir tipstir, TS Ambassador, said:

Yeah, but what's the catch? Read the fine print. Always a catch with these companies. I am about to drop my Amazon Prime, the service is not 100% more like 75% and I don't own a Kindle just over 45 Android Tablets and Smartphone This is my online business programming in Android since 2010.

I see there is a limit to the number of open/read kindle books on Android devices I own. If I pay for the kindle books I should be able to access them on all devices. I gives failed to download messages. Reason I have exceeded my book views.

soldier1969 soldier1969 said:

A better deal for those on welfare other than the Iphone 5C, better get on it !

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

And here comes the denial -> [link]

There is no phone according to this, and won't be free even IF it was.

Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

The smartphone cost is not the issue for many. It is the cost of data and cellular service.

And the smarter the phone, the more the data & cellular service costs.

We, as the consumer, are not supposed to win, that belongs to to company & shareholders.

Ever tried your luck in Vegas?

Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

I can see a lot of teary eyed readers. Remember that saying about "free lunches?". It still holds true.

Khanonate said:

And the smarter the phone, the more the data & cellular service costs.

We, as the consumer, are not supposed to win, that belongs to to company & shareholders.

Ever tried your luck in Vegas?

What luck?

Load all comments...

Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...
Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.