Amazon reportedly working on new ‘Ice’ branded device for developing countries

Amazon Fire Phone

It looks like Amazon aims to distance itself even further from its failed ‘Fire’ series of smartphones with a new lineup branded as ‘Ice.’

According to Gadgets 360, two unnamed sources with familiarity of the company’s plans say the new Amazon Ice-branded phones will be a lineup of devices aimed at emerging markets.

Furthermore, the device will run on the Android operating system (OS) with Google Mobile Services (GMS) allowing users to take advantage of apps such as Gmail, Drive, Maps and the Play Store. Although GMS is something we’d expect to ship with every Android device, the Amazon Fire Phone lacked these services due to the forked nature of its Fire OS Android operating system.

Although the device is called Ice internally, it’s unknown if it will be released under that name.

According to one of the anonymous sources, the new Amazon smartphone will launch in India later this year. The phone is expected to cost Rs 6,000 (approximately $125.75 CAD).

One of the Ice devices being tested features Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 435 chipset, 2GB of RAM, a rear 13-megapixel camera and a back-facing fingerprint scanner. Additionally, the smartphone has a display size between 5.2-inches to 5.5 inches. The smartphone runs Android 7.1.1 (Nougat) and will come with Google Assistant.

The devices did not have Amazon’s own personal helper, Alexa. Considering neither the Echo nor Alexa are currently available in many developing countries, including India, it’s possible the complete version of the Ice will not ship with the AI. That said, Alexa is reportedly coming to India, so it’s possible Ice might be the first Alexa-enabled device to arrive in the South Asian country.

There is a high likelihood the device will not come to Canada. However, it does mean Amazon is working on smartphones again, maybe one day we’ll see an Amazon smartphone makes it way to Canada.

Source: Gadgets 360

Image Credit: Flickr