Amazon has reportedly been in talks with smartphone maker HTC since June regarding an Amazon handset. The long-rumored device – if it ever comes to fruition – is now intended to be sold to Amazon Prime members according to people familiar with the talks as first reported by Bloomberg.
The goal for Amazon is to supplement their tablet offerings and create a new device that can access their Amazon Instant Video service. Recent chatter of a set-top box to accomplish the same goal seems to make more sense as a content delivery vehicle than a smartphone although if a phone were only offered to Prime members and at a very cheap price (maybe even free), it could certainly drive more sales of Prime accounts.
According to sources with the Financial Times, three devices are being discussed by Amazon and HTC. Naturally, HTC didn’t comment on the situation and Amazon didn’t return a request for comment. The report notes that Amazon isn’t yet 100 percent sold on the idea nor do they know when it would be delivered.
It’s entirely possible that Amazon could be afraid to pull the trigger after seeing how poorly the collaboration with Facebook and HTC went. The ‘Facebook Phone’ was a disaster from the get-go and will join the ranks of the Microsoft Kin and the HP TouchPad as colossal failures. AT&T decided to discontinue the handset after just one month on the market but at the same time, Amazon would be in it for a completely different reason.