Amazon's New Fire Phone Is A Nightmare For Retailers

Amazon just unveiled a new smartphone called the Fire Phone.

The phone makes Amazon an even bigger threat to brick-and-mortar retailers thanks to a feature called Firefly.

Firefly allows you to scan items in-person and encourages you to buy them on Amazon instead.

In other words, Fire has a built-in showrooming tool.

The feature “turns the Fire Phone into a sort of universal object scanner that will recognise books, DVDs, or jars of Nutella, and help you buy them — from Amazon,” writes Robert Sorokanich at Gizmodo.

Amazon has already taken market share from traditional retailers by offering lower prices.

The biggest obstacle it has faced is counting on customers to go to the website and look up items, rather than buying in stores.

Amazon’s Firefly removes the middle man and makes shopping on Amazon effortless.

That could become a big headache for its competitors.

Firefly has other handy uses.

For instance, it can recognise a painting and immediately transfer you to the Wikipedia page.

Here are some of the basics:

  • 4.7-inch screen
  • 13-megapixel camera with optical image stabilisation
  • 2.2-GHz processor with 2GB of RAM
  • Gorilla Glass on both sides

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos claims that the phone is optimised for one-handed use. Features we’ve seen previously on Amazon’s Kindle products will also work on the Fire Phone. Second Screen, for example, allows you to easily view videos from your smartphone to Fire TV. X-Ray will provide information about videos you’re watching.

The phone also comes with Amazon’s 24/7 support service called MayDay.

Here’s how it stacks up against the current competition:

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

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