Amazon to Offer Free Phone...Or Not...
Not only has Amazon been rumored to have been cooking up their own phone, but they've also been testing their own wireless network
, using MSS spectrum (specifically the "Big LEO" band at 1610-1618.725 MHz on the uplink, and the Upper Big LEO band at 2483.5-2500 MHz for the downlink) owned by Globalstar. Insiders claim Amazon's wireless ambitions may also involve giving away their upcoming smartphone for free
, sans contract, via their website and wireless carriers.
Insiders tell Jessica Lessin that many details remain up in the air at the moment, including whether users will need to be Prime members to get the device:
There are many unanswered questions about the plan and what strings will be attached for customers. One of them is whether Amazon would require its smartphone owners to pay for services such as Amazon Prime, the company’s loyalty program. But the people familiar with the matter said that Amazon wants the device to be free whether or not people sign up for a new wireless plan at the same time.
While most companies won't comment on rumor or speculation, some forty-eight hours after the story broke Amazon denied the fact the device will be free
, stated the device won't be launching this year, and most of the device details aren't set in stone.