News

Amazon unveils ‘Fire’ smartphone

Amazon unveils ‘Fire’ smartphone

AMAZON: Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos introduces the new Amazon Fire Phone, Wednesday, June 18, in Seattle. Photo: Associated Press/Ted S. Warren

SEATTLE (Reuters) – Amazon.com Inc Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos unveiled a $200 “Fire” smartphone on Wednesday equipped with a 3D-capable screen and an ability to recognize music and TV shows, hoping to stand out in a crowded field dominated by Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics.

Bezos, in a rare media appearance, demonstrated three-dimensional display features on the 4.7-inch device, from depth perception in maps and pictures to the ability to shift perspectives and reveal new information when the phone is tilted.

“What if there were a thousand artists standing by to redraw the picture every time you moved your head?” Bezos remarked to hundreds of Amazon customers, reporters and industry executives gathered in Seattle for the unveiling.

The smartphone joins Amazon’s “Fire” lineup of tablets and streaming devices. It represents the retail giant’s attempt to extend its dominance of online commerce into mobile phones, which are increasingly being used to buy items and view video.

The phone will start at $199.99 for a 32-gigabyte storage version with a two-year contract on AT&T Inc.

Shares in Amazon climbed more than 2 percent as Bezos expounded on the smartphone’s features and were at $332.77 in afternoon trade.

(Reporting by Deepa Seetharaman; Editing by Bernard Orr)

Recent Headlines

16 hours ago in National

Wall Street tumbles

stocks

Wall Street was off more than 1 percent on Thursday, pushing the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones industrial average down 10 percent for the year, as investors jettisoned stocks and scurried toward safer shores.

16 hours ago in Sports, World

U.S. to hire disease experts ahead of Rio Games

zikaolympics

The United States Olympic Committee (USOC) is recruiting two infectious disease experts to advise members of the Rio 2016 team who are concerned about the Zika virus outbreak in Brazil.

17 hours ago in Lifestyle

More Americans turning to Internet to play Cupid

tinderreuters

Just in time for Valentine's Day, a survey shows that more Americans are looking for love through online dating, with more than four times as many young adults using mobile apps than in 2013.

21 hours ago in Sports

Fantasy sports companies defend embattled industry

fantasysports

Daily fantasy sports companies say their industry remains viable despite a rocky start to 2016.

21 hours ago in National

Congress likely to give final OK to local Internet tax ban

cyber

Congress is a step away from sending to President Barack Obama a bipartisan compromise that would permanently keep state and local governments from taxing access to the Internet.