Ant Pruitt
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Amazon Smartphone. . .Maybe

So there's speculation of online retail giant Amazon will be releasing a smartphone under its brand later this year. There's no concrete evidence of this just yet, but it does get the tech world's attention when this comes across the news feeds. Let's consider it to be a certainty for a moment.

Image credit Wiki Commons

Amazon, "the everything store" per-say, has loads and loads of merchandise available for sale to consumers around the world. HDTV on your brain? Amazon has it. More toilet paper needed in your casa? Amazon has that too. Heck, if you need a 4-barrel carburetor for your '64 Chevy Impala, Amazon has it too! Of course the popular e-reader Kindle is available and the even more popular Kindle Fire tablet is available as the company's flagship devices along with the newly released Fire TV. What's Amazon's plan? To get a bigger foot hold in the mobile market space? Why bother? That's overrun by the likes of Samsung and Apple, right? Then again, this may be the final step in the mighty endeavor of mobile domination for Amazon.

There's already an existing app ecosystem with the Amazon App store. It's an alternative to the popular Google Play store offering games and productivity apps as well as Kindle eBook content. The app store is not only used on the Kindle Fire devices, but also any Android device tablet or phone via side load. An attempt at making Amazon your one-stop shop for mobile apps.

So you have mobile apps and eBooks. What's left? Video? Well yes that's available from Amazon via its Prime Instant Video service which happens to be used with the Fire TV seamlessly. Oh and don't mention the search feature available on the tablet and TV devices allowing you to order that 4-barrel carburetor quickly and easily all in a one-click.  With all of these devices in hand, you're just an internet connection away from the everything store.

I wonder what will be used as hardware in this rumored smartphone. LG, Pantech, another producer or all in-house development? What carrier will handle the Amazon phone? Will it go with the power of GSM/HSPA+ or the CDMA variant? Amazon has a history of creating devices on the cheap allowing other manufacturers win on up-front costs, but forcing Amazon into the long term winner's circle with the ecosystem hooks placed into its consumers. Less expensive devices seemed to lead to more sales in the applicable app, book and music stores. If Amazon has learned anything, this approach will be used for its rumored smartphone. Sure the smartphone geeks will scoff at specs that are considered second-tier, but Amazon will probably laugh all the way to the bank.

Being one of those technolust guys, I don't know if I'll have the smartphone in my cart ready for two-day shipping. We'll just have to wait until later this year to see what's really in the cards for Amazon.