If the rumors are true — and we’re pretty sure they are — Amazon is launching a phone today. Sadly, the company won’t offer a live video stream, but we are here at the venue in Seattle to bring you a live blog of all the goodness.
While we have a pretty good idea that some kind of 3D mode powered by head tracking is likely the marquee feature of the phone and that it will have four IR cameras to power this and be exclusive to AT&T. According to our own Matt Burns, it will also sport a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor and 2GB of RAM, along with a 4.7-inch, 720p screen.
The event starts at 10:30am PT/1:30pm ET and we will bring you a play-by-play of all the action below.
Here’s the product page for the Amazon Fire Phone. It’ll be released on July 25.
That wraps up the presentation!
Video: “Firefly is like making the world a hyperlink.”
Video showing people using the features shown off today. Tilt controls seem to make one-handed use a lot easier with the big screen.
Will include 12 months of Amazon Prime.
That’s for the standard 32 GB model.
The Amazon Fire Phone will be $199 on contract or $27 per month through AT&T Next.
Has 4G LTE, in case you were wondering.
You can pre-order the Amazon Fire Phone today.
“What makes the phone different are four key features: Dynamic Perspective, Firefly, Fire TV/Fire Phone controls, and Mayday.”
Ralph de la Vega from AT&T is on stage.
The Amazon Fire Phone will only be on AT&T.
Can set a photo album to be reachable with a single swipe from the lock screen.
A tilt brings up your Camera Roll in messages, can send photos really quickly.
In Calendar, tap on an event, tilt to bring up quick responses if you’re running late.
Showing off “small touches” throughout the phone.
Developer in video: “SDK was so intuitive, I often didn’t have to look at documentation.”
Dynamic Perspective SDK also available now.
Bezos apologizes to the machine learning team for boiling down years of work to two minutes.
Beards, glasses, and hair make face-tracking difficult. Had to use machine learning, which required a ton of data. Used robots to move cameras around mannequins in thousands of lighting situations.
Uses four cameras to have a super-wide field of view and depth perception. They’re infrared, so it works in the dark.
Field of view on front-facing cameras too narrow to track your head from the average distance most use their phones.
Originally used mounted IR points on your head, like Oculus.
Explaining how Dynamic Perspective works.
It looks good — like a 3DS without the headaches.
“The idea of angry tofu delights me.” We’re about to see the 3D effect in games.
Tap a lyric to skip the song to that point.
Music app includes lyrics, accessible by tilting phone.
Recency Carousel on the Fire Phone is like a mix between apps and widgets. Useful notifications show up right beneath your apps.
Recency Carousel for selecting apps is back from the Fire tablets. Also has App Grid, where you can pin apps or content.
Touch the screen to stop, lift to continue reading.
Tilt controls for books — or you can have books automatically scroll at a set speed.
Tilt phone to move around web pages. Demonstrating with a Washington Post article.
Lots of tilt controls throughout the interface that work together with Dynamic Perspective.
You can see elements underneath other on-screen elements. You can look *under* icons on the screen.
You can look around things in a 3D map representation.
Bezos showing how this works with maps.
It’s like looking into a painting.
Dynamic Perspective: phone re-draws 3D images at 60 frames per second.
“What if there were 1,000 artists around to redraw what you’re seeing?”
Video explaining perspective for techies.
Bezos talking about the introduction of perspective in art 600 years ago.
Looks like we’re about to talk about head-tracking 3D tech.
Kids using Firefly and showing to adults. Cute.
Showing the TV ad now.
Firely SDK is available now.
Vivino made an app that gives information about bottles of wine.
MyFitnessPal made an app that can determine nutrition info from food your camera sees.
Gives access to all of the functionality in the Firefly app.
There will be a Firefly SDK for developers.
Controls on side of phone: volume, camera, and Firefly.
Firefly has a dedicated button.
Semantic boosting: Firely can tell if a phone number doesn’t exist, which improves image-to-text conversion.
Firefly can recognize “over 100 million items.”
Firefly can recognize art, pulling up the Wikipedia entry.
Firefly can listen to show, let you access the specific scene on Amazon.
See a CD, play a song on it using Amazon or another music app.
Firefly makes it so you can buy things you see in the real world instantly.
Firefly can detect phone numbers, movies, books, games, CDs, food just by pointing your camera at them.
About to show off a new feature called Firefly.
Available in the “quick actions menu,” a pull-down from the top of the screen.
Yup, Mayday accessible at any time on the Amazon Fire Phone. Works on Wi-Fi or cellular, response in 15 seconds or less.
This is probably about Mayday.
Video showing smartphone users don’t know how to deal with their settings.
Immersion reading, or seamless transition between Audible and reading, built in.
Pandora, Spotify, iHeartRadio, and more will be on the phone, so not limited by Amazon Prime Music’s small-ish library.
ASAP: predictive caching of video you might want to watch.
Second Screen lets you send videos to a variety of set-top boxes.
Showing off Prime videos on the phone. Considering it’s CGI, not sure what the point is.
Tangle-free cables on the included earbuds. WHAT WIZARDRY IS THIS
Dual stereo speakers, Dolby virtual surround.
Unlimited storage of photos in Amazon Cloud Drive.
Instant access to camera, don’t even need to turn on the screen.
Comparing photos from Samsung S5 and iPhone 5S. It’s competitive.
Optical image stabilization adjusts lens 100 times per second.
13 MP camera, f/2.0 lens
Quad-core, 2.2 GHz processor, Adreno 330 graphics, 2 GB of RAM.
590 nits screen: super bright for outdoor use.
4.7-inch IPS screen. Optimized for one-handed use.
Gorilla Glass screen, rubberized frame.
It’s called the Fire phone.
He just pulled it out.
“How would it be different?”
Reasons they would: hardware expertise, millions of customers, the Prime ecosystem.
“Is Amazon going to build a phone?”
Bezos talking about the children’s book he sent to journalists before this event. Says his mother is in the audience.
Amazon/Kindle #1 and #10 on YouGov Brand Index
American Customer Satisfaction Index: Amazon #1 four years running.
Recipe for trust: do hard things well, repeat.
You don’t ask for trust, that never works.
“What’s the most important thing Amazon has done in the last 20 years? I think the most important thing is earning the trust of customers.”
“It’s incredibly encouraging to see the tone of these comments. Reputation is a trailing indicator of excellence.”
Bezos is talking about the change in tone about the Kindle line since its launch, shows a quote from TechCrunch’s review of the Kindle Paperwhite.
What about hardware? Same ideology leads to success.
Showing tweets from Amazon Prime fans.
Try to be a great service for “one customer.” If you can be good for one, you can be good for millions.
“Prime isn’t leaky. People use the service, they love the service, and when it comes time to renew, they renew.”
“We seek to be renewal worthy.”
“Patience, persistence, and obsessive attention to detail” are keys to success.
Bezos credits the launch of Prime Instant Video, Kindle Owners Lending Library, and the Kindle Fire.
Graph of Prime members since 2005. Steady increase until 2011, when it shot up.
60,038 people applied to come to this event.
Jeff Bezos is on stage.
Apparently there are Amazon fanboys!
They’re showing videos of Amazon customers who applied to come to this event.
Lights going down now. Here we go.
7 minutes behind schedule. Bloggers are getting antsy.
The room is just about full, we expect this to start any moment now.
Now we’re in the venue. It’s small, so we’re pretty close to the stage. Amazon is playing better music than Apple did at WWDC.
And we are still in line. Just in case you were wondering.
We are in line — and there is coffee!
It’s a phone!
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