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Report: Amazon Struggles With Fire Phone, No More Than 35,000 Units Sold

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According to The Guardian, who has compiled and analyzed data from both comScore and Chitika, Amazon is struggling to push the Fire Phone to US consumers, having sold no more 35,000 units since its release. The phone has been available through Amazon and AT&T (exclusively) since July 25, priced at $199 and $299 on-contract, or $649 for full retail. 

Using comScore data, which tracks monthly data on US smartphone users, from the date of release up to this point, then figuring in Chitika data which pegs the Fire Phone at 0.015% of its ad network traffic, The Guardian was able to deduce that Amazon has sold no more than 35,000 units.

The number, which does not exactly surprise anyone here at DL, might come as a surprise to anyone else who constantly sees Amazon’s commercials on TV for the Fire Phone. After all, “it comes with Amazon Prime.” When first announced, we noticed right off the bat that the device would lack Google Play Services, so for anyone who would want most of their favorite Android apps, they would be left out in the cold.

Do we have any owners of the Fire Phone here? If you do own one, feel free to tell us what you like and dislike about it. Would you recommend it to your friends and family? Is a free year of Amazon Prime worth it?

Via: The Guardian
  • Kayonesoft

    Gigantic “We Told You So.”

  • FknTwizted

    that and their marketing is geared towards children and not adults.. so i would say yeah no surprised.

  • John Motschenbacher

    And this surprised who?

  • NexusMan

    Why would anyone buy this?

  • AngryBadger

    Shoulda bundled it with an Amazon drone.

  • MRIANB

    Just like the Facebook phone, crap to limited market and even that market has no need for upgrading to it. Fire the whole project team for epic fail.

    Ian B

  • Trueblue711

    The reason for the Fire and Kindle’s success despite a limited Amazon ecosystem was the low price. $649 for an Amazon phone is NOT worth it. Maybe $449 or lower.

  • would have won if they sold it at 1/4 the price

  • Blue Sun

    Breaking News: “Bear craps in the woods!”

  • Maryncland

    Not surprised at all.

  • cardi dark

    Only at&t no google play services equals failure. Stick to my nexus 5 waiting on the nexus 6

  • Craig

    When I saw the first commercial I thought that this phone was being targeted to kids as a possible gaming device. The specs for the phone are not bad but I would never pay $649. They should have taken a clue from the success of Google’s Nexus and priced this at around $349 unlocked. They could have sold a lot more units without getting AT&T involved.

  • Finire

    This is what happens when you take the Android out of Android.

  • GameChanger

    So sad….35000 just got Fired.

  • Johny M

    Whom are these 35k geniuses that bought that POS?
    I guess there is a sucker born every day.

  • onthecouchagain

    I am 0% surprised about this news.

  • tdurden64111

    Someone please post that African kid dancing and add something about getting free Amazon phones.

  • monkeybutts

    And the 35,000 that sold were mostly for developers and reviews.

  • John

    I’m curious about the return rate on those things.

  • Guest

    Who the moron at AT&T & Amazon thought this phone has a chance even after the Facebook phone’s disaster..

    • zoxxo

      You mean the morons that are now unemployed?

  • Razma

    there’s a shocker…

  • Sean Lally

    Ouch.

  • Bman4000

    They must have targeted the AOL subscriber base.

    • BOB Dudek

      Wait till they find out, it won’t work on dial up

  • Mordecaidrake

    This was expected, it’s not a good phone haha

  • Patrick Crumpler

    If they sold it for $199 retail it would have flown. But with no Google and that stratospheric price? No chance. They are going g to get you using their services. They tried a win win for them but just got 0-2

  • C-Law

    Two main issues I see here is they should have done this years ago, probably around when the S3 came out before big companies like Samsung were so established and associated with Android in the main public’s mind. The other issue is an AT&T exclusive. What were they thinking? It’s exactly what Facebook did with their phone. How did they think anything would be different from the Facebook phone fiasco?

    • monkeybutts

      Selling at the price of other established flagships was possibly the biggest mistake. I know a lot of people would rather pay $200 on contract $650 off contract for an iPhone instead of an android phone. Make it an android phone without google and you are asking for trouble.

  • Dave

    I’m not in the mood for math, but I distinctly remember hearing Samsung sells something like 40 phones per minute. Amazon just needs some better commercials….Haha.

  • Chippah

    These will be on a FIRE sale soon like the $99 HP Touchpads..

    • Synacks

      That was a fun time

      • Chippah

        not for me. I got a sandpaper dildo on that one..
        they canceled my order and honored ones that came after…

  • Chippah

    POO.

  • OF

    I try my best to laugh at other’s misfortune, but damn!!!

  • chris_johns

    and this is news? didnt we all assume this already lol no offense to amazon i shop from them often but they were way over their head with this nonsense

  • Synacks

    Good, it’s a sh!tty blatantly copied phone from several Android and iOS devices loaded with a retarded version of Android. I’d buy a friggin Blackberry over this.

  • pyro74boy .

    The things holding this phone back is that you can’t use the Google play store on it and it’s only on AT&T. Hardware wise this phone is great. If this phone was being sold without Amazon controlling it there would be a much better chance of it selling much better. I also would buy this phone on any given day vs the POS iphone

  • compnird

    I’m a 30 something male with 2 kids, a career and a median income… I am already immersed in the Amazon Ecosystem; when I purchase an app I do so in Amazon because then I have it on all my devices including 4 Kindle Fires, I have subscribed to Prime since it’s inception.
    In short: I am the exact demographic they are aiming at for that phone and I wouldn’t touch it with a 10 foot pole.

    #1 reason? I’m on Verizon.
    #2, even if it was on Verizon it’s too expensive for what it is. A gimmick phone.
    #3, Short of Amazon Prime video and the 3D functions which I can’t wait to hit the Fire Tablets, any cheap-o phone can do the same things.

    Fire phone was doomed from the start.

    You’ll see them on the ‘one-day sale’ websites in a few months for ultra cheap but because they are still locked in to AT&T they still won’t sell.

  • The Doctor

    I’m shocked. SHOCKED!!!1111

    /sarcasm

  • Jprime

    hopefully this means they will give us an app

  • jboogie1289

    Ok……and they were expecting what???????????

  • Disqus_n00b

    $649 price, locked to one carrier, it was dead on arrival. On-Contract pricing is a thing of the past

  • Travis Erickson

    I still stand by my original comment, HTC First 2.0

  • nobody9

    IMNSHO, Amazon lost it’s device-making mojo right around the time it ditched the Kindle touch (and when someone coincidentally stole mine) in favor of the paperwhite. Everything they do (device-wise) these day is either overkill or underkill, and everything they do software-wise is too overtly exclusionary to appeal to anyone. It’s as though they haven’t learned anything from the cellular bubble about respecting privacy or cooperation.

  • Tim

    So they built propriety software around overpriced hardware, locked out Google services and stuck it on AT&T.
    They would have sold more if they had hung a sign around it saying, “Don’t Buy This Phone”

  • Bruce

    $199/$299 on-contract is a bad call

  • M3D1T8R

    As predicted. Yawn. Move along..

  • Don Demon

    knew that was bound to happen. Who would lock themselves into that for 2 years.

    I guess 35,000 nine year olds. hahaha!

  • dwade1972

    Boom

  • MrCrusha

    LOL.. sold exclusively to 1 carrier, the carrier has contracts for its users, price-point too high, ecosystem fail, and they wonder why it only sold that much. I’m thinking I’m surprised it had that many sold.

    • AT&T actually has been pushing no-contract plans lately with their Mobile Share Value plans, they still offer contract plans but they don’t encourage them.

  • Christopher Moore

    I’m surprised it sold that many. These people must live under a rock.

  • hfoster52

    You sir are no iPhone……

  • Personally I am hoping the Fire phone is a miserable enough failure that Amazon gets that they are not a good enough hardware manufacturer and they need to start taking Android seriously… Too bad they will always look at their success with the Kindle Tablets and assume they can reproduce it…

  • MichaelFranz

    I saw someone with one sunday night…i looked at him almost to say….really bro…really..im sure he’ll dump it for something else down the road

    I also think the ATT only marketing is kinda killing it. If you arent on all 4 major carriers it hurts you, except for Nexus devices, nexus devices are a staple in my opinion

  • In order for them to have had a chance they would have needed to sell it unlocked for any GSM carrier for under $300 off contract. No they would not have made much money (maybe even no profit) on the hardware at that price but the whole point is to make the money on people buying Amazon stuff.

  • mcdonsco

    That’s what they get for positioning themselves as an inexpensive hardware maker then trying to release a “flagship” priced phone.

  • abhele

    setting themselves on fire!

    • derk p

      i lol’d

  • Pootis Man

    What did you expect was going to happen? Them selling millions of units? The high price on contact, exclusivity on at&t and a crippled OS is kind of the reason why this phone isn’t doing so well. I predict a fire sale (no pun intended) pretty soon like they did with the HTC first.

    • mcdonsco

      Never mind …

  • glimmerman76

    the big problem is the damn thing is sim locked to ATT. If you buy it full retail they should unlock it for you

  • Patrick

    so Amazon what have we learned? Hmm?

    • flosserelli

      Crap sells like…crap.

    • monkeybutts

      No one wants Amazon phones/tablets anymore. Lower prices and add something people really want or GTFO with your limited market.

  • schoat333

    Let se, take away the Google services that everyone love in Android, re-brand it as your own fire OS. Then make it exclusive to AT&T. Nope, can’t figure out why it’s not selling……

    • Don’t forget price it like a much more powerful flagship device from Samsung or HTC

  • Still 34,990 more units sold than the KinONE & KinTWO combined, & maybe 34,900 more units than that (HTC) Facebook phone

    • Christopher Moore

      I mentioned those 2 before looking at your comment. The Kin have to be number 1 on that list (it was a complete embarrassment for Microsoft and Verizon) but I’m not sure if we should put the Fire phone or Facebook number two. Leaning towards Fire because of all the negatives. At least with the Facebook phone you knew it was a failure the moment you heard the name. The Fire phone did a huge crash and burn the day it got announced.

  • RichFromBX

    this has HP Touchpad fire sale written all over it…

  • paul_cus

    HTC First all over again for AT&T.

  • teebone

    First of all, it isn’t a featured phone like the Galaxy S5 and the like. This phone should be 99 dollars max with contract. Maybe 299 full price with the specs it has!!!

    • Christopher Moore

      I wouldn’t even take the phone free on contract. Hell; if Amazon gave me a free one it would be used as a glorified media player at home. It wouldn’t be my daily driver. Maybe if they threw in free AT&t service for a year I might just bite.

  • WCM3

    The only thing good that came from the Fire Phone is her..

    http://adwhois.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/AmazonFirePhoneActress.png

  • Buur

    This phone probably would have struggled regardless, because it is terrible. But hopefully between it and the launch of the Moto X someone will learn that tying your launch, or a big feature of your launch, to one carrier is suicide. (and don’t dare bring up a 7 year old phone as reference as to why it can work)

  • thelolotov

    Oh, locked down Android phone that can’t access the vast majority of Android apps and is horribly mutilated, and tied to only one carrier? I wonder why it’s failing.

    • Don’t forget overpriced based on hardware alone even if you ignore that the software is deliberately crippled.

    • Guest

      Great news, can’t wait for Amazon android adventure to die

      • thelolotov

        Same here. I like Amazon, really, I do, but their Android fetish needs to die.

      • Their Fire HDX tablet is still best in class.

        • Karly Johnston

          I just got a 2013 Nexus 7 for $99. My tablet destroys your Kindle Fire in its sleep.

    • Google’s version of android is also locked down, don’t fool yourself.

      • thelolotov

        I can install any app I want through sideloading. I can root, I can install other ROMs.

        • Don’t get me wrong, I think the firephone is a terrible product. I wasn’t defending it. But to argue that Google’s Android is “open” is a joke.

          • Nat Elam

            What would you have to be able to do for you to consider it open? Run DOS apps?

          • Nat, no offense, you sir, are a dolt.

          • Nat Elam

            None taken. Interesting how you make a baseless comment, then call anyone who disagrees with that baseless statement names. That’s not exactly a very effective debating method.

            So are you going to answer my question? What would a Google Android phone have to be able to do for you to consider it open?

          • TylerChappell

            He’s probably just part of the crowd that is envious of all those Android users who root, but lacks the technical knowledge to do it himself, and thus considers Android to be too “locked down”. When most morons like him make that kinda statement, they are referring to how Google’s core services must be licensed etc in order to come pre-installed on an Android device. Ive seen plenty of Android devices out there that do not have Google Apps, and yes, they are always complete crap, but nonetheless a perfect example of just how open Android is.

      • Nat Elam

        Not even close. In fact, I can easily install Amazon’s app store on my Google phone, without even having to root. If there were any other app stores selling Android apps, I’m certain I’d be able to load their app also. So exactly how is Google’s version of Android locked down?

  • Jeremy Gross

    maybe if they didn’t make their os so kid like, and the at&t exclusivity gone it would succeed.

  • Menger40

    This doesn’t surprise me, but I also don’t trust ComScore numbers. I worked for ReadWriteWeb (not as a journalist) a few years ago. When it got sold to Say Media, other tech blogs wrote about it and quoted ComScore numbers about RWW’s reach and readership. The ComScore figures were way off, far lower than our own analytics numbers. Compete and Quantcast data was garbage also.

    It may not be as bad as ComScore data suggests, but I’m sure it’s pretty bad.

  • Turb0wned

    Well let’s see… AT&T exclusive, check, over $600, check…

  • Grayson

    That’s even less than OnePlus has sold. Impressive.

    • grayson360

      stole my name 🙁

  • Frettfreak

    You don’t say? A crappy phone on a network ran by Satan and it isnt selling well… Who would have ever guessed?

  • flosserelli

    Well considering it is limited to ATT and the commercials show snooty kids that act like they know everything, I am not surprised.

    • BOB Dudek

      .. And clueless “adults”.. Who act like fools

  • Snowbo13

    Just give up and let me have my Amazon Video Service on my Android phone. I can stream it on my Ipad, Computer, and LG Tv, But nope not giving it to Android phones. (watching Falling Skies right now and its only on Amazon not Netflix)

  • JayMars84

    I owe someone money. That’s 34,450 more than I thought they’d sell.

  • Michael Dunigan

    Well.. their TV Ad compaign from the outset has been confusing…. they seem to feature two kids using their Fire phones. Seems like it would be hard to take it seriously. In addition, I think Amazon missed the boat here by doing something different. I was hoping for a no-contract “subsidized” plan. I’d pay the money for the phone if the airtime was free or near free… maybe even have airtime credits tied into purchase history. There was a lot of ways they could have gone instead of locking into AT&T the way they did.

  • Carlos Lopez

    I’m more worried about the 35000 people that bought it

    • Marcellus1

      I don’t have one and don’t plan to get one. That said, I don’t think it’s a bad phone and the Amazon app ecosystem has been getting significantly better–still not Google play, but better. I don’t think it was a mistake per se to try something different–Motorola made waves with the touchless controls and other features in the Moto X. The biggest problems IMO are that the trying something different made it a premium priced phone when it would have sold much better at a low to mid-range price, and the AT&T exclusivity. The 35000 people that bought haven’t necessarily gone wrong with their purchase–particularly depending on their ties to the Amazon ecosystem, but I don’t think it presents the same value proposition as other phones.

      • JRomeo

        This phone was destined to fail at that price point. Especially when you can get other phones which have a better app ecosystem than amazon’s (i.e. play store). The Fire Phone’s unability to have google-drive, google gmail, google play movies, play music, etcetera, including easy and simple access to be able to chromecast stuff to your tv, like mirroring found native on the Nexus5…. i think were the biggest reasons why the amazon phone failed. If this phone would have competed in price with the Motorola E, then it might have been something people would purchase considering they would have to sacrifice so much when purchasing this phone, they might as well get a massive discount for using it.

        • gp

          inability

      • Tom Kiley

        I’m still confused why they wanted to be in the hardware business in the first place. Aren’t they’re really just looking for ways for people to consume more of their products/content, and faster. They should take a step back from the hardware, further-develop Firefly, and make that an app available across all android devices (with cameras).

        And release that dedicated Prime streaming app they’ve been promising.

        • Guest

          because they think with their own hardware they can push their forked Android OS (Fire OS) which gives them more control over the OS to implement their forked ideas (to benefit their core business), they can’t do this thru apps (you need root access to do system level changes and majority of smart phone users don’t root and don’t have time to do this)

        • TonyK

          Because the Fire tablet has been so successful. If people are willing to buy a device that Amazon can push all kinds of apps or other content to then… why not, right? I think this is showing (what we could have guessed) that while people consume content on their phones they prefer to use a tablet and/or a phone is a phone. And consumers prefer to get their phone from a phone carrier.

          I think Amazon might give this one more try, focused on the core reasons people bought the phone (whatever they are). I guess they might do that just to unload the inventory that’s probably sitting in a warehouse. And if that doesn’t work the Fire Phone is dead. They won’t beat a dead horse.

      • JeffColorado

        “I don’t think it’s a bad phone” – For $200 on contract?? Yeah, it’s a bad phone.

        The people who bought it were either stupid or horribly uninformed.

        • Marcellus1

          You seem to not understand the difference between bad price and bad phone.

        • Big Diq Myke

          ***a bunch of old housewives** spending daddy’s money on the kids.

    • El Big CHRIS

      My thoughts exactly. they were probably parents who bought it for their teens or younger children. My cousins bought kindle fires for them, and Im sure they would consider this phone for the kids.

      • MJ

        WTF? $200 phone for a kid? Kids gets the free phone offered by the carrier unless said kid has their own money saved up and no kid with $200 is choosing a Fire phone… You seem to be confusing the function of tablets (content devices) where Kindles make sense (for casual users) with phones.

    • Barry S

      I worried about the illegal alien terrorists invading the greatest nation on earth.

      • Carlos Lopez

        You should loosen up it was a joke

  • Joe O

    I have a friend who sells for AT&T. He had a customer very very close to buying one, then his conscience kicked in and he pretty much told them that they would hate the phone.

    Not surprising at all that it’s failing.

  • Bryan Mills

    Not so good specs and exclusive to AT&T will do that.

    • The OG iPhone says hello and politely disagrees.

      The fire phone is merely a portal to buy from Amazon, that’s why.

      • T4rd

        Not sure where the logic is there. The OG iPhone launched in 2007 when the competition wasn’t nearly what it is now, which is what allowed iOS to be as big as it is today.

      • Bryan Mills

        U wot m8?

      • BOB Dudek

        Period.

    • T4rd

      There’s multiple factors including the two you listed, which are major. The other major factor is that it’s pretty much running a proprietary OS which is restricted to the Amazon app store, which sucks balls compared to the Play Store and iOS app store.

    • DanielMena9

      only one AT&T exclusive worked, the iPhone, and after that BURN any company who tries that again. Even you Moto with your Moto Maker! You were about to die

      • Guest

        Even without AT&T exclusivity, this would have sold another 70k may be, 100k is still a disaster.

        • DanielMena9

          Hey, that’s 200% more. I bet Amazon would take it!

    • Tony Byatt

      I don’t think the specs are the problem but the software, price, and exclusivity was its undoing…

      • Bryan Mills

        Even if it ran stock android, it would still sell bad. But who knows, people like old specs in 2014.

        • Greyhame

          You’re finally getting it. It’s about user experience, not specs.

          • Raj Bhatt

            The user experience greatly disintegrates when low or old specs try to handle new versions of apps and firmware though. When an OEM uses the latest specs, you have greater longevity with your device.

          • Greyhame

            Well…… yeah. Obvious statement is obvious. My point was to those who continually bashed on the Moto X. That device has been the best user experience I have found on a phone.

          • Guest

            Yeah tell me same thing after may be a year or two, I felt the same with Galaxy Nexus..

          • archercc

            To be fair, that phone sucked. It really did. The abandoned TI processor, Samsungs terrible memory management (which I am seeing on the newer Galaxys as well) and such doomed that phone.

            LG, on the other hand, seem to keep it simple and good.

          • nhizzat

            The Galaxy Nexus is a really poor comparison. I ditched the Galaxy Nexus after 6 months, I’ve had my Moto X for over a year and have no reason to upgrade.

          • Raj Bhatt

            The Moto X’s software features are what made it a great user experience. If it had the same specs as the N5, it could last another couple of years. Instead, Moto X users are lining up for the Moto X+1.

            I don’t have much room to talk though, I love my N5, but I’m still gonna buy the new version this year.

          • archercc

            Hell, Im on an N4 and I am debating upgrading (if its a 5.2, made by moto I will).

          • JRomeo

            you should definitely upgrade. sell your N4, and then get the N5 or the new Nexus coming this november.

          • Greyhame

            Well, to be fair, if the Moto X had the same hardware as the N5, not all of those software features users know and love would have been possible.

            I think a lot of people looking at the X+1 are doing so for the same reasons you’re looking at the next Nexus… we love technology! =] I have both devices (well, a Droid MAXX), and while I generally love them both, the Motorola takes home first prize. Now, if only the MAXX had onscreen keys, then it would be the Moto by a landslide.

          • nhizzat

            Are they really? Have you taken a poll of all Moto X users? Any evidence to back up your claim? The only reason I want an X+1 is simply because I want it and I have an upgrade to burn. Otherwise, I have no reason to upgrade my year old Moto X, as does my sister.

          • Raj Bhatt

            Are you looking for an intelligent conversation or an argument?

          • nhizzat

            I suppose a fanboy argument since I responded to a baseless claim. If you substitute Galaxy Nexus for Moto X and Nexus 4 for Moto X+1, I’d agree with you 100%. Your statement infers that the Moto X needs 2013 flagship specs in order to be relevant moving forward. I would agree with you if the Nexus 4 was struggling to run the available Android L ports, but it isn’t. The Moto X is greater than the sum of its parts, while many flagships don’t live up to their specs.

            User experience > specs.

      • Cael

        HTC First

        • Tony Byatt

          Software, price, and exclusivity…

          • Cael

            It had 16GB, no card slot. 1 GB of ram. a 5 MP camera. 1.6 Front.

            Specs were pitiful.

          • Tony Byatt

            Maybe, but the promoted software, the price, and exclusivity would probably be seen as more egregious than the specs…

          • grumpyfuzz

            not trying to be rude, but why do you add a “…” after all of your sentences :P? just something I noticed

          • Tony Byatt

            Not really rude as much as it is a little odd for you to noticed that. Are you stalking me… 😛

            And the answer as to why is a secret… 😛

    • It hurt them a bit but not as much as you might think. It’s unlikely they would have made a CDMA version so the best you could hope for is for it to be unlocked GSM which means only AT&T or T-Mobile in the U.S.

      Their biggest problem is they priced it like a flagship phone from Samsung or HTC but it’s basically an underpowered crippled Amazon device.

    • Bruce

      Amazon thought their phone was equal to iPhone.

    • archercc

      To be fair, this would have still be terrible if it wasn’t exclusive to AT&T. If anything I bet AT&T was the only carrier they could convince to carry it.

      No Google Maps? Im out…

    • Nat Elam

      IMHO the AT&T exclusivity did more to harm sales than anything else.

  • markgbe

    as expected……. Amazon, please get with the program and play to your strengths.

    Just because something is cool and different doesn’t means it will be a hit. Hence Sprint’s Kyocera Echo, HTC Evo 3d, now fire phone.

    • PoisonApple31

      Amazon – please let me stream my video content I ALREADY BOUGHT from AMAZON on my ANDROID DEVICES.

    • Christopher Moore

      There are phones worse then the ones you listed. The HTC facebook phone and Microsoft Kin come to mind. The EVO 3d is much better than those 2.

      • markgbe

        Yeah those two were pretty bad. I actually had an Evo 3d and it wasn’t too bad. fire phone just reminds me a bit about it.

      • Marcellus1

        I had a Kin. Bought it after they switched it to a feature phone instead of a smart phone. As far as feature phones go, it was hands down the best feature phone I ever had. Anyone who got it as a smart phone or expecting it to be comparable in any way to Android or iPhone, however, would have been extremely disappointed because it was about as dumb a smart phone as you could get.

  • d-rock

    DUH

  • Mike Cook

    Fire sale!! LOL

    • Reginald Spence II

      Nice!