The Buyer's Guide

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Amazon Fire Phone

Amazon Fire Phone

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70 Engadget Score
A dependable product that doesn't really stand out from the competition.
70

A dependable product that doesn't really stand out from the competition.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Engadget Review

Amazon's debut phone isn't bad, per se, but there's little incentive for anyone to switch carriers or platforms to buy it. Its unique features don't provide enough utility, and come at the expense of both battery life and performance.

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Pros
  • Mayday provides quick access to tech support
  • Comes with free year of Prime membership
  • Good call quality
Cons
  • Exclusive to AT&T, no global options
  • 3D effects can cause motion sickness
  • Limited ecosystem
  • Dynamic Perspective and Firefly need some work
  • Unique features hamper battery life and performance
70 Engadget Score
A dependable product that doesn't really stand out from the competition.
70

A dependable product that doesn't really stand out from the competition.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Scores

Engadget

70
 

User Reviews

80
DrPepperDanny
I love my Fire. I like being individual with it not having a mainstream android...read more
80
BONZIE97
PROSDisplay is amazingGood battery lifeBuilt to lastUniquePowerful processorCONSAmazon...read more
80
JoxGO
There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws. - Engadget
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Score Breakdown

 
69
Average Critic Score
Product Review
The Verge
You have a homescreen with a giant carousel of your most-recently used apps and content, along with a standard app grid underneath. It involves a lot of big, chunky graphics on a black background, but it's a remarkably consistent aesthetic that works for casual use.
Product Review
CNET
It seems a lot like a Kindle Fire, in phone form. But it has a few special features -- a universal scanning app, and a crazy set of infrared cameras that create 3D-like phone navigation -- that could set it apart from the competition.
Product Review
Engadget
Spec-wise, it isn't the most impressive phone ... it's simply what you'd expect from an average phone. Of course, Amazon's focus is on what makes it unique; the gestures, imaging prowess, Dynamic Perspective and Amazon services are differentiating factors that it can boast over other smartphones.
Product Review
SlashGear
It's solid, though doesn't feel especially premium in the hand. Think along the lines of a Nexus 4 rather than, say, an HTC One M8 or iPhone 5s. The rubberized outer edges are at least grippy and the whole thing is creak-free, aided by the fact that the battery is non-user-removable.
Product Review
Gizmodo
We were excited about the phone coming into our hands-on, but ultimately, we walked away feeling somewhat unenthusiastic about it. It comes off as a bit gimmicky, and it's missing some features that would make it competitive with phones from the three major operating systems.
Product Review
PC Mag
The marquee feature here is Dynamic Perspective, which leverages four front-facing cameras and infrared technology to track a user's face and adjust perspective on the display accordingly. This serves a few purposes beyond simple eye-candy effects.
Product Review
VentureBeat
The Fire Phone’s “app grid” isn’t so different from app screens on other phones except that the icons have a 3D quality and move slightly as your head moves. This is because the sensors at all four corners of the front of the phone are detecting the relation of your head to the device.
Product Review
Android Central
This isn't just a spec-matching phone to go out and play toe-to-toe with the Galaxy S5 and LG G3 — it's Amazon's take on what a phone should be, and it's packed in enough features and use-cases into a single device that more than a few people will be interested in it.
Product Review
The Next Web
The Fire does have Nokia Here maps, but anyone that uses Android or even iOS will be disappointed to see their favorite mapping app missing. Having these apps missing from a tablet is unfortunate, on a smartphone, it’s a huge gaping hole.
Product Review
TechHive
Gestures only took me a couple minutes to get used to, and I could see how they might become indispensible once you really get accustomed to them.