Amazon famously misread the market when it launched the Fire Phone in 2014 without any Google apps. Scarcely a year later Amazon had abandoned the device in the face of minuscule sales figures. Now, it’s rumored to be prepping a new smartphone, but unlike the Fire Phone, this one will apparently run a version of Android with Google services.
The report claims Amazon will brand these new phones as “Ice,” and they will ship with Android 7.1.1. That means they’ll have Google Assistant out of the box. Alexa support isn’t as clear, but I’d be shocked if Amazon didn’t add that. The Ice phone will also have the Play Store and all the apps that come with it. The first of these phones might launch in India by the end of the year, perhaps as a trial before shipping the phone in other markets.
This would be an inexpensive phone with modest specs including a 5.2-5.5-inch screen, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, a 13MP camera, and a Snapdragon 435. Amazon is currently planning on a price of Rs 6,000 (roughly $93), but that could change by the time it launches. Well, if it launches.
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