Amazon is putting ads and product offers on the lockscreen of Android phones it sells

Amazon wants a spot on your Android phone.

The company on Tuesday announced that it’s discounting the price of two unlocked Android smartphones, the forthcoming Moto G (4th-gen) and Blu R1 HD, by $50. Unfortunately, there’s a couple of big caveats.

First, you can only get this discount if you’re an Amazon Prime member.

Second, the reason Amazon’s able to sell these phones for so cheap is because it’s putting its own ads and apps on them.

Think of it like what Amazon currently does with the “special offers” on its own
Fire tablets, just with third-party devices. You’ll see targeted ads for varying Amazon and third-party services on the lock screen and notification tray, while apps for Amazon, Amazon Music, Amazon Video, Prime Now, and Audible will be pre-installed by default.

Amazon says those apps will work like Google’s usual suite in that they can be removed and disabled — but it doesn’t appear that they will be totally uninstallable.

The deal means the 16GB Moto G — whose predecessors we’ve enjoyed — will start at $149.99 unlocked, or $179.99 for the 32GB model. The R1 HD, meanwhile, will start at $49.99 unlocked. The company says it will slash another $25 off the former in a limited-time promotion. Both phones will be available on July 12.

When asked whether or not the company plans to expand this ad-subsidized program to other manufacturers or higher-end devices, an Amazon spokesperson would only say, “We’ll see.”

Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through hispersonal investment company Bezos Expeditions.

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