Amazon’s Firephone might be released exclusively on O2 in the UK, according to the Financial Times. When it was initially launched in the US it struck a deal with AT&T in another carrier exclusive.
That rules me out of buying one, there’s no way I’m giving up my Vodafone contract and quite frankly O2’s network is rubbish around here. My neighbour couldn’t even get a 3G signal in the garden today and guess what… the reason he’s with O2 is because he bought an iPhone on an exclusive O2 deal.
Bearing in mind that the Firephone is basically Android, but without many of the Google apps that you expect as standard such as Google Maps, it has to compete on price with the Samsung Galaxy range as well as iPhones. If you want a phone purely to access Amazon products and have a snazzy Dynamic Perspective (aka 3D) interface it might be attractive, but as most people want smartphones to perform not only as phones but as mini-computers it’s restrictive.
So a smartphone which restricts the apps you get and at the same time is restricted to just one UK mobile operator at launch and is priced along with other high end premium handsets. That’s a hard sell for Amazon to make the Firephone a UK success.
Would you buy one?