Amazon already has its own popular tablet with its own custom Android skin, its own app store and a huge customer base, so it’s not terribly surprising to hear rumors that Amazon might be working on its own smartphone to compete with the likes of the iPhone.
Foxconn International Holdings Ltd. (2038), the Chinese mobile- phone maker, is working with Amazon on the device, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified because the plans are private. Amazon is seeking to complement the smartphone strategy by acquiring patents that cover wireless technology and would help it defend against allegations of infringement, other people with knowledge of the matter said.
A smartphone would give Amazon a wider range of low-priced hardware devices that bolster its strategy of making money from digital books, songs and movies. It would help Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos — who made a foray into tablets with the Kindle Fire — carve out a slice of the market for advanced wireless handsets. Manufacturers led by Samsung Electronics Co. and Apple shipped 398.4 million smartphones and other mobile devices in the first quarter, according to researcher IDC.