Reviewers of the new Amazon Fire 3D smartphone have not been so kind in recent days as more and more reviews are published, highlighting the extremely competitive nature of the smartphone industry.
While some argue the phone is easy to use and its functionality is adequate for those who do not have much experience with smartphones, many others argue that the promotional PR push by Amazon on its features appears somewhat "gimmicky."
That is not good news for Amazon, which hopes this first foray into the smartphone sector will help position the online retailer into new technology arenas. But with an overwhelming array of negative reviews for the phone, which had aimed at competing against the top-shelf companies, Amazon should not be as positive on sales as it may have been a few weeks ago.
The litany of negatives will force the Seattle-based company to rethink how to promote the device as it aims to challenge the likes of Apple and Samsung in the smartphone field. Currently only available on AT&T, this sales tactic has been criticized as millions of potential users will not be able to get their hands on the Fire 3D immediately as a result.
Overall, reviewers pointed to the lack of a long battery life, the inability to access key applications and a number of features that are missing, but which are currently available on other similar models on the market. Ironically, a key advertising point for Amazon on the phone was its industrial design that it hoped would be seen as modern and innovative, but instead analysts feel is drab and common.
When the company made the announcement for the Fire 3D, Amazon promoted the phone's new features as delivering a new "immersive" smartphone experience.
According to tech analyst Geoffrey Fowler, the battery life of the phone is the biggest hurdle to overcome. The Fire 3D battery, similar to the battery in Apple's iPhones, cannot be replaced.
"In the past five days, I couldn't once get the Fire's battery to last to day's end -- a telephonic cardinal sin," Fowler wrote. In a battery "torture test" of streaming video over Wi-Fi with the screen at 50 percent, the Fire lasted just 6 hours and 40 minutes, 16 percent less than the Samsung Galaxy and 25 percent less than the iPhone, according to Fowler.
Despite the negatives, overall interest in the phone remains high and although the reviews appear to push the phone down the pecking order, it will be consumers who will make the final decision. Coupled with a massive PR campaign, the Fire 3D should do all right.