Kindle Phone is arriving September 2014, according to the Wall Street Journal’s Kindle Phone scoop. It is, unfortunately, a subscribers-only article. However, you can read up on the Kindle Phone below.
Kindle Phone Release Date – Kindle Phone announced in June, available by September 2014
WSJ has made the following claims -
Kindle Phone is currently being shown to developers in San Francisco and Seattle. Perhaps to generate enthusiasm and apps.
- Kindle Phone will be announced in June 2014.
- Kindle Phone will be shipped in September 2014.
Interesting that the dates would be so specific. It seems some of the developers who were shown Kindle Phone broke the Confidentiality Agreements they perhaps had to sign. Or perhaps it’s just Amazon doing a controlled leak to gauge interest in a Kindle Phone.
It’s strange that there’s nothing about what it looks like (hopefully not a bland brick with less soul than a McDonald’s Burger). What features it has (after the first 5 minutes the 3D won’t seem that impressive). What the price will be (3D doesn’t sound cheap, does it).
Kindle Phone Details – What will Kindle Phone be like?
WSJ has made the following claims -
Kindle Phone will have 3D technology. There will be 4 cameras at the 4 corners and they will track your retinas and create a 3D/hologram type image for you. Apple is getting its lawyers ready – how dare anyone else build a phone that employs users’ retinas.
- Kindle Phone Release Date is mentioned earlier – end of September 2014.
- Amazon will reveal all the details on Kindle Phone in June.
June announcement and end of September Shipping Date. A bit strange, no?
Why announce Kindle Phone 3 to 4 months before it ships?
My assumption is that Amazon has no idea of how much demand there will be for a Kindle Phone with 3D.
3D is a technology that hasn’t really taken off. 3D TVs have failed miserably. 3D hasn’t really taken off in video games either.
- Amazon probably has a decentish idea of demand for phones thanks to its Amazon Wireless subdivision (which sells phones and phone plans). However, there are no 3D phones yet, so it can’t predict demand for Kindle Phone 3D with a high degree of confidence.
- A 3D Kindle Phone is highly unlikely to be a ‘budget smartphone’. That means demand will be driven primarily by whether people find the idea of a 3D phone appealing and are willing to pay for it. We aren’t talking about a $0 Kindle Phone with 6 months free service – that would sell like hot cakes at a Marie Antoinette clone production center.
Amazon’s only option to gauge demand is to announce the Kindle Phone, take pre-orders, and estimate actual demand based on the preorders. The last thing Amazon wants is to end up with 3 or 4 million retina-tracking, 3D manifesting Kindle Phones rotting away in shipping containers in some remote part of China.
It’s a bit strange that Amazon is going all-out with 3D. It certainly seems like Amazon is betting the house on their 3D technology. If you had to release a Smartphone, in today’s crowded market, would you really bet on 3D as the one killer feature?
Will 3D make a Difference for Kindle Phone?
The short answer - probably not.
The long answer – Sometimes a company falls so in love with a product idea or a feature that it can’t see the user benefit side (or doesn’t care). What benefit does having a 3D phone bring for users?
You can watch Candy drop in 3D? Your email’s letters are in 3D? You can farm your virtual farms and watch the corn grow in 3D?
You can turn on the screen and a giant neon 3D ‘Look at Me. I’ve got a 3D Phone that I never use the 3D on.’ sign flashes for everyone else to see how cool you are?
Perhaps Amazon will show that the 3D TV people were doing it wrong and that 3D works great if you don’t need glasses. Perhaps it’ll turn out to be a gimmick that no one cares for. Perhaps it’ll be a feature that gets users to buy the phone (whether or not they use 3D afterwards doesn’t matter to Amazon).
Let’s discuss things that would make a Kindle Phone worth buying.
Kindle Phone Wish List
Well, here are a few things -
A reasonable price.
- A very reasonable data plan and WhatsApp or Kik or Line integration so no texting costs. Probably leave out WhatsApp since it’s going to get Facebook’ed now.
- Something that’s beautiful, not a brick that looks like Mr. Boring-but-Safe was put in charge of design.
- Something that’s super easy to use.
- No Ads. Please, for the love of God, no ads that are everywhere like annoying gnats. No Ads means No ‘Special Offers’.
- Light Weight.
- Large Screen, but not so large it’s a Tablet.
- Multiple Models – Perhaps an option for a cheaper Kindle Phone that doesn’t have 3D.
- Availability internationally.
- A very good set of base function apps. The Email and Phone and Messaging Apps should be rock-solid.
- What else?
No, 3D isn’t on the list. 3D isn’t some magic bullet that will win Amazon a place in the Smartphone Top 3. Amazon will have to make a really good phone.
What will Kindle Phone be called?
Calling the Kindle TV ‘Kindle Fire TV’ is a bit of a strange choice. Why not just call it KTV or Kindle TV or something short and sweet.
Hopefully Amazon stays away from a convoluted name for Kindle Phone. ‘Kindle Fire Phone 3D’ is too long and complicated. ‘Sets your Retinas on Fire’ Kindle Phone – yeah, that’s out too.
‘Kindle Phone’ has a nice ring to it. Just two words. No need to add a bunch of things.
Given Amazon’s past history, expect Amazon to choose a name by jumbling together suggestions from their copywriters. Something absurd like – Kindle Fire Phone 3D with Hologram 3D and Shark Guardians with Lasers.
Can Kindle Phone with 3D compete against iPhone & Samsung Galaxy S5
We’ll have to wait and see what the Kindle Phone is actually like. 3D by itself is unlikely to sway users.
What’s interesting and encouraging is that Amazon is releasing a Kindle Phone, Amazon is releasing Kindle Phone in 2014, and Amazon is taking a shot at making something NEW and INNOVATIVE.