Amazon’s Smartphone, The Next Big Rival for iPhone 5?

This time next year we might see on the market a smartphone released by Amazon to challenge Apple’s iPhones, according to analysts’ predictions.

This is more than a hearsay flying around without any support, thinks Mark Mahaney, analyst for Citigroup. He wrote a note to the investors suggesting that according to information came from the supply chain, the e-commerce giant will release a branded smartphone in time for the next year’s holiday season.

More specifically, he wrote with all the confidence “Based on our supply chain channel checks in Asia led by Kevin Chang, Citi’s Taipei-based hardware research analyst, we believe an Amazon Smartphone will be launched in 4Q12.”

Furthermore, the analyst hints that Amazon will join forces with Apple’s partner Foxconn, to develop the new smartphone. For the development of Kindle Fire, Amazon broke the alliance with Foxconn because of the rush to put the product on the market. The component manufacturer is expected to be Hon Hai TMS, already in partnership with Amazon for Kindle range and for a mysterious Kindle 8.9-inch tablet that is firing up rumours.

Mark Mahaney also suggests the internal components of what technology blogs already call the Kindle Phone. He believes that Amazon’s smartphone will integrate Texas Instrument’s OMAP 4 processor and is very likely to adopt QCOM’s dual mode 6-series standalone baseband. To make the story complete and to give more confidence in its sources and research, Mahaney doesn’t forget to mention the production costs, ranging between $150 to $170. No word on the operating system yet, but Android platform is the most likely bet.

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