Bad news for “Amazon smartphone” seekers—an official spokesperson from Amazon.com has just released a statement confirming it will not be releasing a branded smartphone in 2013. This goes against a rather wild speculation started by Jessica E. Lessin on Friday, which suggested that the internet giant will not only be planning to launch an Amazon-branded handset in the near future, but also offer the device at practically no cost to consumers. The rationale behind such a strategy, as explained in Lessin’s original report, appeared to be related to Amazon’s desire to earn a much larger spot in the mobile device market as well as to compete more effectively against the likes of Google and Apple.
With the internet giant shooting rumors down, it’s difficult at this point to not feel a little skeptical about the whole amazon-smartphone affair. A number of months ago, Wall Street Journal had initially managed to keep everyone’s hopes up by suggesting Amazon is developing not just one, but two major smartphone models: these include an entry level Android device as well as a high-end model that would reportedly feature a glasses-free 3D display (similar to what was used in the Nintendo 3DS’s console). Since then, the Amazon-smartphone rumor mill had stayed mostly quiet, with relatively little, if any, major updates released on the two aforementioned handsets.
For what it’s worth, Amazon is technically still likely to release a smartphone device at some point in the future. This is mostly due to the company’s “low cost” manufacturing advantage, its possession of an already well-established online ecosystem, and the existing popularity of the Kindle tablets. Judging by the internet giant’s market-share-oriented mentality, it is reasonable to also expect its smartphones to be priced in a largely affordable range, even if they end up not being given away for free.