Amazon's First Phone May Be AT&T Exclusive

A group of unnamed individuals have confirmed to The Wall Street Journal that Amazon's Kindle-branded smartphone, set to be revealed on Wednesday, will be an AT&T exclusive for the foreseeable future. AT&T already provides wireless services to Amazon's e-readers and Kindle Fire tablets, so the news isn't all that surprising.

AT&T went down this exclusivity road before with the Apple iPhone back in 2007. The company held on to the phone for more than three years, giving it a competitive edge over rivals Verizon Wireless, T-Mobile and Sprint. If the Kindle phone changes the smartphone landscape just as the first iPhone did, then AT&T may see another huge spike in sales and new subscriptions within the next few months.

Sources claim that Amazon's phone will have a screen that displays 3D content without the need for special glasses. This will be accomplished by using a camera mounted at each corner of the screen. Using retina tracking technology, these cameras will track the user's face so that the 3D imagery stays correct no matter how he/she is looking at the phone.

Amazon's phone is expected to feature a 4.7-inch IPS screen powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon chip, 2 GB of RAM, and Amazon's Android-based Fire OS 3.0 "Mojito" platform. Customers will have access to more than 240,000 apps from the Amazon Appstore, and possibly digital content that won't count against the user's mobile data limit.

In addition to the 3D aspect, sources previously said that the new phone will support tilt gestures. By tilting the handset in different directions, the phone will render additional information without the user having to touch anything. Amazon wants users to interact with the phone's display with just one hand, and without having to touch the screen.

Whether the 3D aspect is just a gimmick or a smartphone game changer remains to be seen. However, we're pretty sure that Amazon is launching its very first smartphone on Wednesday, as the company let it slip in a recent teaser video. Based on the feedback shown in the clip, Amazon has created something quite unique.

Would you use a 3D phone?

Follow Kevin Parrish @exfileme. Follow us @tomshardware, on Facebook and on Google+.

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  • bemused_fred
    *1 year laters*

    "Amazon's 3d smartphone sells 0 units, AT&T shocked as to why."
  • Other Comments
  • bemused_fred
    *1 year laters*

    "Amazon's 3d smartphone sells 0 units, AT&T shocked as to why."
  • Jake Hall
    That's a good, first mistake to make
  • eklipz330
    i've always thought that phones and tablets were perfect for headtracking 3d, as headtracking 3d only works when one person is looking at the device. check out this video of a guy who now works for google i believe: