The smartphone might be the logical next step for Amazon after the success of the Kindle Fire tablet. In fact, a handset from the retail giant has been rumored for months. There's more evidence today that it might be coming.
Amazon has been collaborating with HTC to build a smartphone for Amazon Prime subscribers, Bloomberg reports. While the two companies have been talking "since at least June," no final decision on the handset has been made. The device that Amazon and HTC spawn will not only be sold by the retailer and the manufacturer, but also by wireless carriers that offer 4G access, the report said.
"HTC has a pretty good experience at building phones for other companies. An original design manufacturer (ODM) for Palm, HP and many mobile carriers in the past, earlier this year the Taiwanese vendor even made a smartphone featuring the pre-installed Facebook Home layer for the popular social network," said Yankee Group analyst Boris Metodiev. "Considering HTC's recent financial problems, it is not so surprising that the vendor may decide to go back to being an ODM, this time for Amazon. HTC has struggled to differentiate its devices from the plethora of Android smartphones. A device built for Amazon will have no such problems because it will come with the pre-loaded Amazon Prime service. Manufacturing smartphones for the online retail giant will certainly diminish HTC's margins, but it will also provide a much needed stream of cash and stability for the reeling company."