Less than a week after reports surfaced that Amazon’s Fire Phone sold “no more” than 35,000 units since being released in July, the latest move by the e-tailer and its exclusive carrier partner, AT&T, suggests that the data used to estimate the sales numbers may be pretty accurate. Amazon announced today that the phone’s on-contract price has been slashed from the original $199 cost to a mere 99 cents with a two-year agreement with AT&T.
At its original price, the mid-range specs and a gimmicky 3-D feature couldn’t compete with other manufacturers’ flagship phones consumers could buy for the same price or even less at Amazon itself. Sure some more phones may be sold now that it’s essentially free on a contract, but at this point it’s just about getting rid of inventory to cut the losses on the product. On the bright side, the Fire Phone lasted (slightly) longer than HTC’s Facebook-centric First did on AT&T before its price was cut to 99 cents before being discontinued earlier this year.
Maybe Amazon should stick to selling its successful KIndle Fire line of tablets and leave the phones to companies like Samsung and Apple that sell millions of units of their phones. I guess you can chalk this up to a failed experiment for Amazon, though I can’t really say I’m surprised by this outcome.