Amazon Kindle smartphone rumors resurface, to be offered for free, no contracts

The idea of Amazon releasing it's own phone isn't exactly new, but the latest rumors are saying that the retailer will be offering the Kindle-branded smartphone to customers for free, with or without wireless contracts attached. This is a huge departure from common mobile device practices today and it remains to be seen how Amazon plans to pull this off.

Rumors of an Amazon smartphone date way back perhaps two years, during the height of the company's Kindle thrust. The fabled smartphone has already been rumored to sport a number of features, including eye-tracking and glasses-free 3D display. However, Amazon has yet to actually announce or even hint at such a device. According to former Wall Street Journal writer Jessica Lessin, who first wrote about the Amazon Kindle smartphone, the retailer has been having trouble finding a manufacturing partner, and this might explain why.

According to Lessin's latest tip, Amazon is planning to sell its smartphone for the very affordable price of free, with no two-year wireless contracts dangling in front of buyers. Understandably, this is a considerable risk, not only for Amazon, but even for manufacturers, as it goes against common business practices these days. Amazon must have a plan to be able to offset manufacturing costs and find willing partners.

One possible scenario is that the Amazon Kindle smartphone would be offered for free but only for subscribers of its services, such as Amazon Prime. However, sources indicate that Amazon plans to totally have a no strings attached system. The only other conceivable option would be to have inescapable ads displaying on the device even on its lockscreen, as the company did with some of its Kindle tablets.

Amazon has remained very mum on the matter, so we're not exactly sure what it has planned for the smartphone, if it indeed even plans to have one. A totally free and unchained smartphone might be enticing, but it remains to be seen what, if any, the catch will be, like being riddled with ads that you can never turn off.

VIA: Android Community