Sep 09, 2014

Is the Amazon Fire a failure?

I think it’s fair to say that the Kindle Fire tablet was a disruptive product. It sold at a reasonable price point, had solid specs, and moved many units since its introduction. The Amazon Fire smartphone, with reasonably high-end specs and some unique features, came out a month or so ago, and is already selling for $0.99 on contract. In contrast to the Kindle Fire, is the Amazon Fire a failure for the company?


Yup, it looks like a complete bomb so far or Amazon wouldn't cut the cost. But you might want to check out the Amazon Fire phone user reviews on Amazon to see what the owners are saying about it. I suspect Amazon probably has a long checklist of things to change or fix in the next release, if there is one.

Contract prices are next to meaningless, but $0.99 for a device that was intended to compete with the iPhone and Samsung Galaxy is still not a good sign. Also the sales numbers have apparently been soft, with recent reports indicating that total sales of the Fire have been under 35,000 units.

The thing is that the Fire is a decent enough phone, but it is in a much more limited ecosystem than either it’s iPhone or Galaxy competitors. Also, the Fire is an AT&T exclusive, so that’s going to limit its sales to some degree right off the bat.

Another problem for Amazon is that there are a lot of very good choices in the market right now, including the Nexus 5, Galaxy 5S, Motorola Moto 360, LG G3, and the HTC One. Other than the gee-whiz factor of the 3D display, there isn’t really much to make the Fire a more compelling option that those other choices.
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