Amazon is preparing to release its first smartphone this summer and BGR reports that the company is planning to offer a unique wireless data plan, called Prime Data, as one of the key selling points of the phone.
Although BGR’s sources couldn’t confirm exactly what the company has in store for Prime Data, they speculated that it would take advantage of some aspects of AT&T’s new “Sponsored Data” program.
Sponsored Data, announced in January, allows companies to pay for users’ data traffic for certain apps and services, meaning that data used up on a designated app wouldn’t count towards the user’s monthly data cap.
Amazon could be planning to give smartphone buyers free access to its various Prime-branded services, like TV and movie streaming from Prime Instant Video and its Amazon Cloud music player (it has also been recently rumoured that the company might release a Spotify-esque product).
Another theory from a BGR source was that Amazon could offer a simple discount plan that’s cheaper than other smartphone data plans, or that it could give users free data for several months after they buy the phone.
However Prime Data manifests itself, sources told BGR that it will be a key selling point for the Amazon smartphone.
This will huge for Amazon, which needs a way to differentiate its new phone — which will run a modified version of Android — from all the others on the market. Even if its hardware and software aren’t better than other options, if it’s cheaper for people to use, Amazon’s phone could be a huge hit.
Smartphones have gotten cheaper and cheaper, but wireless plans remain pretty pricey. If Amazon offers good service at a lower price than the competition, it may have a compelling offer to consumers.
Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through his personal investment company Bezos Expeditions.