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WSJ: Amazon testing smartphones with 4-5" displays

post #1 of 40
Thread Starter 
On the heels of last week's report that Amazon is working on a smartphone, another mainstream media outlet claims the retailer is already testing handsets sized between four and five inches and could begin mass production of a device as early as late 2012.

The Wall Street Journal noted on Wednesday that sources among Amazon's parts suppliers report that testing of a smartphone is underway.

"Officials at some of Amazon's parts suppliers, who declined to be named, said the Seattle-based company is testing a smartphone and mass production of the new device may start late this year or early next year," author Lorraine Luk wrote.

Assuming the report is accurate, Amazon appears interested in releasing a phone with a large display, as one tipster claimed the online retailer is currently testing devices with screens between four and five inches.

The Journal's claims come on the heels of a Bloomberg report from last week said Amazon is working with Foxconn to produce a smartphone. The publication also suggested that Amazon is looking to buy up wireless-related patents in order to protect itself from intellectual property threats.

Hints of an Amazon-developed handset first emerged late last year. Citigroup analyst Mark Mahaney told investors last November that channel checks with the Asian supply chain.

Amazon is expected to pose a credible alternative to Samsung and Apple, the current smartphone market leaders. It has been suggested that Amazon is likely to follow the same model it put forth with the Kindle Fire and fork the Android OS in order to better integrate it with its own products and services.
post #2 of 40
If I were Foxconn, I'd think long and hard about arming the competitor of my biggest strategic customer

Windows survivor - after a long, epic and painful struggle. Very long AAPL

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Windows survivor - after a long, epic and painful struggle. Very long AAPL

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post #3 of 40

Maybe Amazon can drop to a P/E of 15 (from, uh, 180!?) once they get into the product business? Or maybe Apple can run up to $8000 per share so that there's some P/E parity? I'd love to know what's actually holding Amazon in the realm of investment retardation and how it hasn't corrected yet.

post #4 of 40

Can't someone smarter than me check the FCC for evidence of a device submitted for approval?

post #5 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by pmoeser View Post

Can't someone smarter than me check the FCC for evidence of a device submitted for approval?

I've never seen an FCC submission posted. I've only ever seen published results after it passes. Apple even has a history of getting the FCC to release the results on a given day, usually the day of or day after they officially announce a device.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #6 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrstep View Post

Maybe Amazon can drop to a P/E of 15 (from, uh, 180!?) once they get into the product business? Or maybe Apple can run up to $8000 per share so that there's some P/E parity? I'd love to know what's actually holding Amazon in the realm of investment retardation and how it hasn't corrected yet.

I'll settle for the latter option, $8000 an AAPL share please /grin ...
Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
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Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
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post #7 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrstep View Post

Maybe Amazon can drop to a P/E of 15 (from, uh, 180!?) once they get into the product business? Or maybe Apple can run up to $8000 per share so that there's some P/E parity? I'd love to know what's actually holding Amazon in the realm of investment retardation and how it hasn't corrected yet.

For those who are interested, courtesy of WolframAlpha:

 

Screen Shot 2012-07-11 at 5.00.19 PM.png
Where are we on the curve? We'll know once it goes asymptotic!
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Where are we on the curve? We'll know once it goes asymptotic!
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post #8 of 40
I can see phones this size being popular for the elderly. I can see Walgreens also wanting similar sized phones for the same reasons, they'd fit in well next to the medical supplies section.
Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
nMac Pro 6 Core, MacBookPro i7, MacBookPro i5, iPhones 5 and 5s, iPad Air, 2013 Mac mini, SE30, IIFx, Towers; G4 & G3.
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Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
nMac Pro 6 Core, MacBookPro i7, MacBookPro i5, iPhones 5 and 5s, iPad Air, 2013 Mac mini, SE30, IIFx, Towers; G4 & G3.
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post #9 of 40

It'll never work. Everybody knows you can't order from Amazon by phone. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sarcasm)

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post #10 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by IQatEdo View Post

For those who are interested, courtesy of WolframAlpha:

LL

Those last two rows need updating ... Or will soon! Looking forward to my dividend payments this Fall.
Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
nMac Pro 6 Core, MacBookPro i7, MacBookPro i5, iPhones 5 and 5s, iPad Air, 2013 Mac mini, SE30, IIFx, Towers; G4 & G3.
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Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
nMac Pro 6 Core, MacBookPro i7, MacBookPro i5, iPhones 5 and 5s, iPad Air, 2013 Mac mini, SE30, IIFx, Towers; G4 & G3.
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post #11 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


Those last two rows need updating ... Or will soon! Looking forward to my dividend payments this Fall.

That caught my eye too.  Enjoy your dividend!

Where are we on the curve? We'll know once it goes asymptotic!
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Where are we on the curve? We'll know once it goes asymptotic!
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post #12 of 40

New Amazon Handset: Ring-Ring

 

Amazon Phone Customer:  Hello?

 

Amazon Marketer: Hello Mr Smith, in exchange for providing our Amazon Kindle Shopping Phone to you at a significant loss, we'd like to offer you the opportunity to become an Amazon Prime member for only $79 a year.

 

Amazon Phone Customer: This is the tenth time you've offered me this!  Stop calling!

 

Amazon Marketer: We're sorry Mr Smith, if you change your mind, you can simply tap on the unremovable 'Become an Amazon Prime Member' icon on your homescreen. 

post #13 of 40
^ exactly.
post #14 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrstep View Post

Maybe Amazon can drop to a P/E of 15 (from, uh, 180!?) once they get into the product business? Or maybe Apple can run up to $8000 per share so that there's some P/E parity? I'd love to know what's actually holding Amazon in the realm of investment retardation and how it hasn't corrected yet.

 

I agree. I won't touch that stock with a barge pole. One day investors will be in for a nasty shock.

post #15 of 40

Amazon makes even Facebook stock look cheap, but Linkedin is the king of overvaluation.

post #16 of 40

so when will be see the Amazon Car or the Amazon Garbage Collection Service?

 

Other companies do this too and make money from it, so seeing as the trend these days is to copy something successful and try get into "a piece of that pie" why dont they try and diversify completely and offer a service in pretty much everything. Amazon Airline, Amazon Oil, Amazon Fridges etc

 

Not just pointing the finger at Amazon here, Facebook, Google and loads of others are doing the same thing. "We have no experience in this market, but we see others making money, so now we are joining this bandwagon" 

 

Lads, stick to what you know best... new markets are great, but you have to have a sound reason to get into it, and it seems like the reasoning these days is based on what "cool and popular"

Place must be run by cheerleaders. Save the cheerleader, save the world.

post #17 of 40

Foxconn already makes products for other competitors to Apple so your point is mute.  Foxconn is a business, that makes money just like Apple.  Diversify or die that is the nature of business.  What if Apple decides to split production or shift product production away from Foxconn and they failed to add other products to their hundreds of factories what then.

post #18 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by markbyrn View Post

New Amazon Handset: Ring-Ring

 

Amazon Phone Customer:  Hello?

 

Amazon Marketer: Hello Mr Smith, in exchange for providing our Amazon Kindle Shopping Phone to you at a significant loss, we'd like to offer you the opportunity to become an Amazon Prime member for only $79 a year.

 

Amazon Phone Customer: This is the tenth time you've offered me this!  Stop calling!

 

Amazon Marketer: We're sorry Mr Smith, if you change your mind, you can simply tap on the unremovable 'Become an Amazon Prime Member' icon on your homescreen. 

Amazon will be selling their "rumored" smartphone or Phablet to carriers, its not a WiFi only device like the Kindle or Kindle Fire.  So they WILL make a profit on it and a good profit at that.  Plus they can lock users in with their Amazon Prime, media services and other benefits.  Apple is hardly the only game in town.

post #19 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by RaptorOO7 View Post

…its not a WiFi only device like the Kindle or Kindle Fire.  So they WILL make a profit on it and a good profit at that.

That's certainly not evidence of anything.

Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone] exists, it doesn’t deserve to.
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Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone] exists, it doesn’t deserve to.
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post #20 of 40

Doesn't sound very hard for hardware; China is crawling with third-tier Androind handsets already. Pick one and put the Amazon label on and bam! Kindle Phone 1.0.

 

On the software side, as long as this thing restricted to the U.S. and only countries where Amazon Store is available, Apple won't need to worry about it too much. Don't tell me iPhone 3S cannot hold the line at this price racket now in 2012.

post #21 of 40

Quote:

Originally Posted by Red Oak View Post

If I were Foxconn, I'd think long and hard about arming the competitor of my biggest strategic customer

 

Foxconn assembles hardware (xBox's, PC's, phones you name it) for everyone and anyone, its their business model - so this isn't a big deal for them.

 

So, it seems like this Amazon phone may be for real.  With their video streaming restricted to just the U.S., its hard to see where the upside is for them here if they don't make money off the phone to begin with, but lets see where they go with it.

post #22 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Red Oak View Post

If I were Foxconn, I'd think long and hard about arming the competitor of my biggest strategic customer

Apple doesn't own Foxconn and can't dictate who they work for. All they can do is demand that Foxconn keeps their mouths shut. Just like the other 70 or so clients would demand.

If Foxconn refused to do business with someone that was an Apple competitor they might as well sell out to Apple cause that would be basically they only one they could do business with.

A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

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A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

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post #23 of 40

Looks like a rouge Android will keep living on in the Amazon wilds. This is fragmentation biting hard.

post #24 of 40

Why not just install Skype on a Chromebook and hold it up to your head?

post #25 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by monstrosity View Post

 

I agree. I won't touch that stock with a barge pole. One day investors will be in for a nasty shock.

in the meantime I shorted AAPL yesterday and today for a sizeable gain..p/e for internet companies do not matter

"Apple people have no objectivity when it comes to criticism of Apple.." Lenovo X1 Carbon is out..bye bye MBAir

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"Apple people have no objectivity when it comes to criticism of Apple.." Lenovo X1 Carbon is out..bye bye MBAir

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post #26 of 40
New phone accessory: wheeled cart to carry yor 50" plasma screen non-iPhone.
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post #27 of 40

Here we go again, another company who has grown as big as they will get and trying to figure new ways to bring in revenue. As typical they are venturing into areas where they have no real experience with. They will fail, but then again, they may not if they plan as I suspect, they will be giving the hardware away and there are plenty of people looking for hand outs (our entire entitlement society) who will take the phone and be advertise to and buy other Amazon product. So how many companies have expanded into ears where they have no real experience of knowledge only to fail at it.

 

In reality, do you think it is a phone or another Kindle fire with Cellular modem for data like the iPads.

post #28 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by daylove22 View Post

in the meantime I shorted AAPL yesterday and today for a sizeable gain..p/e for internet companies do not matter

Please keep on doing that. It's folks like you that helped my AAPL grow from $70 to over $600. Believe me I don't mind the small ups and downs along the way.
Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
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post #29 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


Please keep on doing that. It's folks like you that helped my AAPL grow from $70 to over $600. Believe me I don't mind the small ups and downs along the way.

 

I wouldn't call them small and I wouldn't say we are done for the year (downs) but I can almost guarantee that the holiday quarter is going to crank AAPL to well over $700.

 

Meanwhile... Amazon's smartphone should make it about as much money as the Kindle Fire... and, yes, I know Amazon tells us they make money on after market sales (I find it hard to even write that with a straight face).

na na na na na...
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na na na na na...
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post #30 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post

New phone accessory: wheeled cart to carry yor 50" plasma screen non-iPhone.


That is just an exaggeration. Just because you are too used to a smaller device, doesn't mean that there are those who could do with something larger. Sometimes I really wish they made bigger iPhones.

post #31 of 40

Amazon, Google, and perhaps Facebook. It's just the beginning. More phones and tablets coming soon from Yahoo, Microsoft/Bing, Walmart, Twitter and your local convenience store. Crazy? Maybe. But if it works for Google and Amazon, why not the others?

 

How all of this will turn out is an interesting question. Will the cost of developing devices that are even modestly competitive with Apple's products, and selling them at cost or below, provide enough returns through additional product sales for Amazon, advertising revenue for Google and so on? It may work for Google, but I have doubts about Amazon benefiting significantly.

 

It's interesting that after all the moaning about Apple's "walled garden", that the other guys now want to cultivate their own. Will this stop with phones and tablets, I wonder? With TV moving toward the forefront of digital connectivity, will we see Amazon, Google, and others offering internet connected HD flat panel sets? That seems extreme, but if TVs become the centerpiece of home internet connectivity, perhaps it's in the cards. H'mm, Amazon 55"  HD TVs for $500, complete with crawling adds across the bottom of the screen.

 

I'm not convinced that this business model will work with mobile devices, let alone TVs. But the tech marketplace is always full of surprises. The one thing I'm willing to bet on is Apple continuing to command most of the profits in the industry. Of course, Apple too could subsidize their hardware in ways similar to Google and Amazon. Hard to imagine, but as someone said a few years ago, "the future is long".

post #32 of 40

It's hard to see what Amazon could really bring to the table here. With tablets, they could subsidize the device with the hope that users would buy a bunch of stuff on the tablets that they might not have bought on their home computers or other tablets. With phones, it's harder to imagine their subsidy paying off. Phones aren't as useful for consuming content, and general shopping is a lot less fun on a phone than on something with a bigger screen. Maybe something else, like they've figured out a way to make money from some kind of NFC payment scheme? More likely, if this rumor is true, they saw how many tablets they were selling, misunderstood why they were popular, and thought this could translate into a viable phone strategy.

 

I agree with the rest of you who think Amazon's valuation is ridiculous.

post #33 of 40
For all the odd maneuvering I'm glad to see Amazon do it. It's at least much better than all these other companies that spend year-after-year, decade-after-decade doing nothing to expand their level or knowledge and expertise. Most just do the same old things hoping expecting it to continuing working indefinitely. Regardless of anything else we have to give Amazon credit for that.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply
post #34 of 40

OMG- so now Amazon is "stealing" from Samsung besides Apple-

Oh the HORROR!

 

BTW- who invented "one-click" shopping?

post #35 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

On the heels of last week's report that Amazon is working on a smartphone, another mainstream media outlet claims the retailer is already testing handsets sized between four and five inches and could begin mass production of a device as early as late 2012. [...]

 

Hey Amazon!

 

Here's a time-and-money-saving tip: don't build your own smartphone.  Just buy Nokia and hack the Lumia 900 to run Android 4.1.

 

You'll achieve the same result either way: negligible market share, embarrassingly poor sales, red ink, and an early product end-of-life.

But exploiting Nokia would be cheaper and would result in a smaller carbon footprint.  One dying smartphone line is more efficient than two.

Sent from my iPhone Simulator

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Sent from my iPhone Simulator

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post #36 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by SockRolid View Post

Hey Amazon!

Here's a time-and-money-saving tip: don't build your own smartphone.  Just buy Nokia and hack the Lumia 900 to run Android 4.1.

You'll achieve the same result either way: negligible market share, embarrassingly poor sales, red ink, and an early product end-of-life.
But exploiting Nokia would be cheaper and would result in a smaller carbon footprint.  One dying smartphone line is more efficient than two.

They've been working with the Kindle eReaders in the HW and SW and services for years now. Those have gotten considerably better over the years, too. Even the difference from the 1st to 2nd gen was pretty extreme. I wouldn't be surprised if the next Kindle Fire follows the same path. To me that shows they have an understanding of Linux on all their devices and Android for their Fire. I don't think it's too crazy that Amazon will be able to build a competent phone in a couple years. I certainly think it's better than them buying other failing companies unless it's for the IP because the effort to use their staff would seem too overwhelming and unnecessary at this point.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #37 of 40

"Amazon is likely to follow the same model it put forth with the Kindle Fire…"

 

…and substantially subsidize the cost of the devices to gain an immediate (and artificial) advantage in the market.

post #38 of 40
I guess Amazon didn't lose enough money on the Kindle Fizzle. What US carrier is going to give an 'Amazon' phone priority or shelf space over the iphone or flagship Android phones? Maybe Cricket.

Hell, Target told Amazon to F#@k off after Amazon tried to scam them. Amazon should stick to selling cheap products online. It's what they are good at.
post #39 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by SockRolid View Post

 

Hey Amazon!

 

Here's a time-and-money-saving tip: don't build your own smartphone.  Just buy Nokia and hack the Lumia 900 to run Android 4.1.

 

You'll achieve the same result either way: negligible market share, embarrassingly poor sales, red ink, and an early product end-of-life.

But exploiting Nokia would be cheaper and would result in a smaller carbon footprint.  One dying smartphone line is more efficient than two.

Part way there. Amazon's convinced Microsoft's Windows Phone Director to jump ship and come to work with them.

http://www.theverge.com/2012/7/12/3154272/robert-williams-former-windows-phone-director-joins-amazon

melior diabolus quem scies
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melior diabolus quem scies
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post #40 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post

Part way there. Amazon's convinced Microsoft's Windows Phone Director to jump ship and come to work with them.

http://www.theverge.com/2012/7/12/3154272/robert-williams-former-windows-phone-director-joins-amazon

Or maybe the Amazon phone will drop Android for Windows Phone 8? Not as much of a stretch as one might first think. There is any number of Asian handset manufacturers who could build a phone for Amazon. Amazon has no need to buy a faltering company. Ah, but Microsoft needs to expand WP8's exposure. It would be worth it to Microsoft to give Amazon a very attractive deal. The real question is, IMHO, is Microsoft smart enough to make such a move?

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