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Amazon Fire Phone Hands-On: A Spark of Innovation

rkmelton's picture
Wed, 06/25/2014 - 5:05pm -- rkmelton

After much speculation, Amazon announced its Fire smartphone, which features a comfortable and durable design, innovative 3D-like display and a new way of using the camera to identify–and then purchase–anything from armoires to zucchini. We went hands-on with the Fire, which will be available for $199 on AT&T, to test out its new features, and see if it has the potential to unseat Apple and Samsung.

Similar to the iPhone 4S, the front and back of the Fire phone is swathed in Gorilla Glass 3. The sides, though, are covered in a soft-touch material, and are angled at the corners, which makes the phone comfortable to hold. Measuring 5.5 x 2.6 x 0.35 inches, the Fire is skinnier than the HTC One M8 and the Samsung Galaxy S5, which are 2.8 and 2.9 inches wide, respectively. We found it much easier to reach our thumb across the display without having the shift the phone in our hand, which we appreciate. At 5.64 ounces, though, the Fire is heavier than the S5 (5.1 ounces) and the One M8′s 5.6 ounce design, but the added weight wasn’t overly noticeable, at least not in our few minutes with the phone.