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Friday, 25 July 2014 11:09

Amazon phone based around Qualcomm

Written by Nick Farrell



Tear down around dotted line

Amazon’s new "Fire" smartphone appears to be another victory for Qualcomm’s quad core snapdragon 800. iFixit has conducted a teardown of the beast and found that it contains chips from Qualcomm, NXP Semiconductors, and Samsung. Amazon's maiden smartphone, includes four cameras that track a user's head movements to enable special screen effects, ships this week to customers in the United States.

The phone is powered by a Qualcomm quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor and costs $600-plus. The phone feeds into Amazon's core retail business. It touts a "Firefly" feature that can recognize objects and direct users to the same item on Amazon's online store. iFixit said on its blog on Thursday that it discovered radio frequency, power amplifier, audio and WiFi chips also from U.S. chipmaker Qualcomm.

Apart from the quartet of head-tracking cameras, the phone also includes a 13-megapixel rear-facing camera and a 2.1-megapixel front-facing camera. The device opened by iFixit included 32 gigabytes of NAND memory chips made by Samsung for storing pictures, music and other media. The phone, which has a 4.7 inch LCD display, included 2 gigabytes of DRAM memory from Samsung. The handset included a near field communication chip, enabling features such as mobile payments, from NXP.

The Fire smartphone also employs a touchscreen controller from Synaptics, and a communications chip from Skyworks. The "Fire" is expensive at $649 contract-free or $199.99 with a contract with AT&T so it in the same price range as the iPhone. It is also not subsidised by Amazon.

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