Posts tagged with: Amazon
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    All too often, when we're looking at theories concerning an upcoming smartphone, the rumor narrative sort of falls apart once the handset is finally announced. We may hear a number of competing ideas on what to expect, but at that moment when the one correct version is finally confirmed, what happens to all those now-proven-false rumors? More often than not, they're swiftly forgotten, but that doesn't mean that their mystery is over. Today we check in on one of those old tales, as a new report attempts to shed a little light on Amazon's move into the smartphone game. Long before we had the ...

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    Today may very clearly be Apple's day in the sun, but even as we prepare for the its latest announcements just a few hours from now, there's another A-company catching our attention on the mobile front, with Amazon pushing a pretty sizable update to its Android app. Amazon had already been on our radar this week due to the much-appreciated Fire Phone price cuts we just saw go live, but this time it's Amazon Prime that's our focus, and specifically Amazon Prime Instant Video. Thanks to the latest update to the Amazon Android app, Prime subscribers in the US will now be able to watch free ...

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    Ever since Amazon launched the Fire Phone a few months back, we've been anxious to learn if the company's first smartphone effort would find success. Going in, we were nervous about what effect its flagship-level pricing and carrier exclusivity would have on sales, and based on the projections we've seen, it doesn't really look like Fire Phone sales have been, well, on fire. But now Amazon may finally be ready to start doing something to turn the phone's fate around, and today we get word not just of an expansion of Fire Phone sales, but a godsend of a price drop. Starting today, the Fire ...

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    Storing sensitive data in the cloud has always been questionable. Over the weekend we learned just how "sensitive" that data can be. Just in case you were on vacation, unplugged from technology, and haven't heard the news, reportedly dozens of celebrities had their iCloud accounts hacked and nude photos stolen and posted publicly on the Internet. While some may celebrate this as a triumph, it's really a horrifying violation of privacy. How would you feel if the leaked images were of your spouse, your child, or your parent? Basically, what's being reported is that some "celebrities" used ...

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    It wasn't too long following Amazon's launch of its Fire Phone back in June that we started hearing warnings of underwhelming consumer interest. First we saw what appeared to be a precipitous drop in pre-sale figures, and then later we checked out some survey data that showed Fire Phone interest lagging behind even that for Windows Phone or BlackBerry. But for all this nay-saying, one all-important figure continued to elude us: the actual number of Fire Phones Amazon has managed to sell. The company has yet to release official data, but some new estimates place the number pretty darn low. ...

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    The Amazon Fire Phone is a pretty interesting device, but it comes with the Amazon Appstore instead of the Google Play Store. What if you want some other apps? Because the Fire Phone is based on Android, you're in luck! Just like other Android-powered devices, you can sideload applications right onto the device, but the process looks a little different than you may be used to. Here's how you can sideload apps on the Amazon Fire Phone. Enable Sideloading Head into the Settings by pulling down on the top of the screen and tapping the Settings cog. From there, find Applications & Parental ...

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    When we went hands-on, and gave Amazon's Fire Phone the full review treatment earlier this month, we didn't have many nice things to say about its battery life, rating it as "poor to fair". This rating carries with its own measure of irony since Amazon touts "uncompromised battery life" as one of the selling points of its phone. "You'll definitely want to take a charger with you if you're planning on anything close to heavy use. We haven't once reached 4 hours of screen-on time with the Fire Phone's embedded 2600 mAh battery, and charging it every night has been a non-negotiable ...

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    Updated with time codes, new streaming portals, and links to the high-quality version. Skip past the YouTube embed and download your very own copy of this week's podcast. Enjoy! Thanks to our new Blackphone review devices, we're already halfway off the grid ... or at least, halfway buried under Post-It notes littered with passwords, which is almost the same thing. Before we get too stealthy, though, we're hosting us a little show. Some of you might know it as the mobile technology podcast that's gone 108 episodes without missing a single week (accurate). Others might know it as the last ...

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    Amazon's Fire Phone should have a lot going for it: it was created by one of the biggest retailers in the US, giving it fantastic exposure, it's got some solid hardware and well-executed software features, and the OS  itself is refreshingly pleasant to navigate through. But then crap like the bad battery life, forgettable camera, lack of Google apps, and way-too-ambitious price tag managed to turn us away. Even if we weren't digging the phone, would the average consumer find reason to buy this handset? One month back, we looked at some troubling pre-release sales figures, and now a new ...

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    The long-rumored, long-awaited "Amazon Phone" is finally here, and it's a doozy in more ways than one. Over the past week of testing, we’ve shown you its most fun features and run through its camera capabilities, and we've taken your questions live on the air during a special segment of the Pocketnow Weekly podcast. Now it's time to see how our impressions of the Fire Phone have changed since our first hands-on. As Amazon's own site helpfully reminds buyers, Fire is the only smartphone on the market with "Dynamic Perspective, Firefly, Mayday, and more." It's the only phone that gives ...

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    The Fire Phone is many things to many people: a funky 3D screen; a portal to a Prime membership; a refreshing escape from the normalcy of the typical smartphone world; a gimmick to be disregarded until the next generation – the list goes on. But whatever your personal opinion, the fact remains that as Amazon's first-ever smartphone, the newest Fire is indisputably significant. And part of its significance lies in its camera. The Amazon Fire Phone camera is a 13MP sensor backed up by the usual slew of glowing marketing material on the device's purchase page: it's a "custom-tuned camera ...

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    Amazon's Fire Phone may be the company's new baby right now, but when it comes to Android devices, Amazon's best known for its family of Fire tablets. Last September we saw it introduce its latest lineup, including some new Fire HD models and the debut of the HDX series. With the anniversary of that launch coming up on us, can we expect a new offering of Fire tablets this year? Some benchmarks may give us an early look at what to expect, but from what we're seeing here, we wouldn't expect any massive changes. Last year's Kindle Fire HDX 8.9 was a pretty capable tablet at the time (and ...

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    The Amazon Fire Phone is still a newcomer to our labs, but it's already been reviewed in several publications the world over. The verdict thus far: this might not be the phone you bring home to momma – not yet, anyway. Though we offered some initial impressions on the Fire Phone in the latest episode of the Pocketnow Weekly podcast and in the unboxing video embedded below, our minds are still chewing on the question of whether Amazon's first smartphone deserves to exist. The answer will have to wait for our full review coming (very) soon, but in the interim, we thought we'd whip up ...

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    You might buy a Fire Phone for its sweet Amazon Prime bundle, or for the Firefly feature that makes it even easier to add to your vast piles of material wealth. You might buy it to fiddle with its Dynamic Perspective display or to see just what its optically-stabilized camera can do. You might even buy it just to say that you own Amazon's first smartphone. Or, you might decide not to buy it at all, preferring to play the everlasting waiting game we talk about on the Pocketnow Weekly podcast. Whichever way you go, you'll want to know what the Fire Phone looks like. Humans being the vain ...

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    Update: Due to today's difficulties with Hangouts, the below Hangouts video is not the ideal recording of today's Weekly episode. Instead, we highly recommend the Libsyn-hosted version, edited by our own Jules Wang and available for streaming and download at the links below. Thanks for listening! One of the nice things about hosting your own podcast is that you get to decide exactly what qualifies as "news." Not in the mood to pretend the latest wave of iPhone 6 display-glass leaks fit the description? Well, tweak the filter a little, and suddenly you've got just a small handful of ...

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    Those quotes up there in the title do more than apologize for our unoriginal, lame pun: they acknowledge a truth that's gotta be tough for Amazon to swallow. The company's first smartphone, which we laid hands on last week, has seen mixed reviews in its first wave of press. There are good reasons for that. With a dubious exclusivity deal in place, a boatload of extraneous features masking its not-quite-Android OS, and a price point that's all kinds of wacky, the Fire Phone's utility isn't clear outside its role as a portal to easier, faster Amazon purchases. Factor in the ho-hum ...

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    It's the first smartphone designed by Amazon, and it marks a day that many of us said would never come. The Fire Phone has landed, and you can buy it now! It's got this cool new pseudo-3D tilty thing called "dynamic perspective" (which actually sounds kind of cool), and some fairly decent specifications. The CPU powering the Fire Phone is a 2.2 GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor, and it's loaded with 2GB of RAM. Both of those are good, but neither are top-of-the-line. If anything, those are last year's specs. On the graphics side, there's an Adreno 330 GPU, but it's only powering a ...

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    Even with the lack of success that companies like Google have found in wallet applications, that doesn't mean that these are giving up on this service. Apple's approach was different with PassBook where you can't really buy anything with it due to the lack of NFC capabilities on iPhones, but you can still store certain cards on it instead of having to carry them around. Amazon Wallet is a mix of these things as we saw on the Amazon Fire Phone, and this just became public for the rest of us. Amazon has just launched its Amazon Wallet service on the Google Play Store. This app won't allow ...

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    Update: Edited podcast with download links has been added below the YouTube embed, courtesy of our excellent podcast editor, Jules Wang! Get to downloadin', folks! The big guys have enough time in the limelight. It seems every week we're spending 80% of the podcast talking about the huge players in the mobile space, along with their commensurately huge smartphone and tablet offerings. While we're not ignoring those established forces in this episode, we are devoting a bit more time to newcomers: from Amazon to OnePlus to a little firm called GoTenna, there's a lot going on in mobile's ...

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    AT&T was kind enough to host us at a hands-on event in NYC last night, and of all the things we came away with, one of the biggest was a renewed appreciation for what a crazy-busy review season it's been. We'd already reviewed almost every single one of the devices AT&T had on display, from wearables like the LG G Watch to affordable smartphones like HTC's Desire 610 to outliers like the not-quite-so-durable Samsung Galaxy S5 Active. Standing apart from these devices, though, was the holy grail of the event: thanks more to its rarity than any one distinctive feature, the ...

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    Amazon's Instant Video service has a fair level of advantages and disadvantages. If you're a Prime customer, you have an incredible amount of titles that are free for you to watch, and you can always pay for the ones that aren't. The biggest disadvantage is that Amazon had locked this service for Smart TVs, Kindle Tablets and iOS. You could get this service working on Android, but the walk around was too frustrating to not prefer a free month of Netflix. Luckily it seems that Amazon has smelled the coffee, and this problem should be fixed soon. Amazon Marketing Director Russell Morris ...

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    Amazon has proven to be one of the most unpredictable companies in the world lately. From bashing tablets with its e-readers, to launching tablets, to claiming it wouldn't launch a phone, to actually launching one, there seems to be no limit to the scope Amazon plans to reach lately. The only frontier we haven't heard Amazon working on is wearables, but that could change very soon. You may not recognize the name Babak Parviz on the street, but if we told you he's one of the project leaders of Google Glass, then things start to ring a bell. Parviz is also famous for leading another Google X ...

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    In-app payments are a lucrative form of income for developers, not to mention the companies behind the app stores and payment processing platforms that profit from every sale. But more than once we've seen in-app purchases put under scrutiny for the ease at which they can be made – and specifically, problems parents have when children, given unsupervised access to smartphones and tablets, run up unexpected bills. While a fair share of that blame arguably lies on the parents themselves, in the US the FTC has been going after companies it sees as not taking proper steps to prevent such ...

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    The Amazon Fire Phone wasn't met with the best reception, even right out of the gate. Even before getting their hands on the device, many have called it "gimmicky," and other words of that nature -- and that may be justified, though we don't know as of this moment. Ratings on Amazon's own store (ironically) are showing that the Amazon Fire Phone sales have likely been anything but impressive so far. Since its debut on the Amazon store, the Fire Phone has tanked to the 77th place. Depending on where it debuted, this may not be a huge issue, but it originally had one of the top five ...

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    You can go back a long way and see that I have been on board the “Amazon making a phone” train from the start. I was an early adopter before there was anything to adopt. I was genuinely excited to see the Amazon event. I was genuinely disappointed when Amazon decided not to stream their event. But that’s not the only thing that genuinely disappointed me, as you’ll soon see. Amazon was making some very interesting strides into the mobile field. Firefly was surely cool – snap a photo of something to buy it. It was very Amazon. Carousel not only apps, but also books and websites. ...

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