Is Amazon Planning a Smartphone?
Amazon seems to have been on “fire” lately, and it looks like the company is ready to continue its streak of product launches with the ongoing development of a smartphone. At least, according to Citigroup's research department. Some supply chain channel checks in Asia have revealed that an Amazon phone, jointly developed with Foxconn, may hit the market by the fourth quarter of 2012.
The device is rumoured to contain a Texas Instruments OMAP 4 processor and will likely share a few components with Amazon's other products, notably the baseband controller from QCOM. A build price of between $150 and $170 is quoted, but if Amazon wants to use the device to sell their digital services (a strategy the company is using with the Kindle Fire), the phone will likely sell for about the same amount, if not less.
Not much other information on the phone is known, particularly what operating system it will run. It may use Google Android, but, considering the fact that Amazon is supposedly looking to buy what's left of Palm from HP, the phone may end up with WebOS instead. This will allow Amazon to diversify itself from the other smartphone makers, and probably boost its popularity, too. But will it work? We'll have to wait and see.