Inside Amazon's Fire Phone

Inside Amazon's Fire Phone

Summary: While on the outside the Fire Phone is sleek and smooth, according to iFixit the inside is "a veritable mess of cables, connectors, and glue." For anyone thinking of buying a Fire Phone with the idea of repairing it if something goes wrong, the iFixit verdict on this is simple – don't buy it.

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Amazon Fire Phone
(Source: iFixit)

Amazon's flagship smartphone is finally out, and that means that over at iFixit HQ it's teardown time.

While on the outside the Fire Phone is sleek and smooth, according to iFixit the inside is "a veritable mess of cables, connectors, and glue." For anyone thinking of buying a Fire Phone with the idea of repairing it if something goes wrong, the iFixit verdict on this is simple – don't buy it.

The Fire Phone receives a repairability score of 3 out of 10, where 10 is easiest to repair. Even simple repairs are made hard thanks to glue and fragile cables, and replacing a cracked screen will mean either having to replace the four Dynamic Perspective cameras encased in the front element too, or spend a lot of time transferring – possibly unsuccessfully – the cameras to a new screen.

Amazon Fire Phone
(Source: iFixit)

Inside the Fire Phone Samsung and Qualcomm are the winners.

  • Samsung K3QF2F200A-QGCE 16 Gb (2 GB) LPDDR3 RAM with the 2.2 GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800 CPU with 450 MHz Adreno 330 GPU sandwiched into the die
  • Samsung KLMBG4GEAC-B001 32 GB eMMC NAND Flash
  • Qualcomm WCD9320 audio codec
  • Qualcomm QFE2320 multiband power amplifier
  • InvenSense MPU6500
  • NXP 47803 NFC controller
  • Qualcomm PM8941 power management IC
  • Qualcomm WTR1625L RF transceiver
  • Skyworks SKY85702-11 5 GHz WLAN front-end module
  • Qualcomm WCN3680 802.11ac combo Wi-Fi/Bluetooth/FM chip (which supports
  • Bluetooth LE 4.0 but isn't yet active, which means that the current range of smartwatches aren't yet supported)
  • InvenSense IDG2021 2-Axis OIS gyroscope

There's no doubt that Amazon also has steep challenges to face in breaking into the smartphone arena. The first is that as a single retailer it will have to shift tens of millions of handsets in order to even twitch the needle in terms of market share. If we just look at Android alone, there are now over 1.5 million devices being activated daily.

Then let's not forget that the Android ecosystem is dominated by a single player – Samsung. I've lost count of the myriad of tablets and smartphones this company currently has on offer. And it's a company that has a reputation for making good products.

Amazon is using easy access to its empire as a lure, but whether this is a big enough pull to get users to swap their smartphones for the Fire Phone remains to be seen. There's also a worry that Amazon has packed too much of itself into the Fire Phone, and that users will feel that they are paying a premium for the privilege of being allowed to spend more money with Amazon.

Amazon Fire Phone
(Source: iFixit)

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Topics: Mobility, Amazon, Smartphones

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11 comments
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  • I am shocked at amazon charging top dollar for this thing

    my opinion of them has changed. That added cost is all for being able to effectively sell more stuff. Sure that may be benefical to the user as well, but I'm sorry, it should be half the cost. And people are always mad at google for the supposed ill effects of their advertising ( I see no more advertising on a nexus phone than a iphone). At least they subsidize their nexus phones.
    drwong
    • Did they hire some recently laid off MS marketing people?

      This is a classic MS move and very uncharacteristic of Amazon
      otaddy
      • Please.

        smh.
        Hallowed are the Ori
        • Nice use of hipster lingo

          Now I'm smh.
          otaddy
          • One would hope so...

            ...assuming you meant include some additional context: "smh wondering why I posted that bit of unrelated anti-MS spew".

            You know the problem with hand-grenades like the sort you lobbed? They're fairly indiscriminate. If you don't throw them with enough force, they can just as easily blow up in your face.
            Nierteroth9
          • you mean like "smh"

            Wow...
            ScanBack
    • Your overlooking whats included in that price. It's not just the phone.

      Amazon Prime is 99.00 for a year.

      That gives you access to all of Amazons movies/shows and free shipping on all products for one year. If you're a regular shopper on Amazon, this IS a good deal.

      Maybe not for everyone, but you should consider what comes with buying the phone. Not just the price and hardware alone.

      ~Best wishes on your choice.
      GotThumbs
  • I thought Fire would be cheap as well!

    Amazon going premium is surprising. I'd go with BlackBerry's Z10 if looking for a premium phone, that actual users enjoy, for cheap.
    HenselM
  • non starter...

    A phone barely anyone wants at a price no one is willing to pay.
    Playdrv4me
  • LOL. Replace the word Amazon and Fire with Apple and I..

    "There's also a worry that Amazon has packed too much of itself into the Fire Phone, and that users will feel that they are paying a premium for the privilege of being allowed to spend more money with Amazon."

    There's also a worry that Apple has packed too much of itself into the IPhone, and that users will feel that they are paying a premium for the privilege of being allowed to spend more money with Apple.

    Only REAL difference...Amazon has greater veriety of products...not just Apps, Music, and Movies.

    Amazon is ONLY looking what Apple has done....which resulted in Billions of cash in the bank.

    Who would blame Amazon for coming up with thier own hardware. This is the FIRST Amazon phone. A decent first generation phone.

    Personally, I don't use Apple or Amazon for any of my hardware/purchases, but I give Amazon props for making this logical step, considering Apples success. The Fire won't have the Cache the IPhone does, but I don't think they are trying to compete on the same field.

    Also, the IPhone is not exactly easy to repair either. Lets see how the QC is for the Fire Phone after a couple of months.

    ~Best wishes on our choice.
    GotThumbs
    • Actually... you kind of missed the point

      the point being that they are VERY late to the game and are not offering much more than Apple and Samsung. So your asinine comparison here is really useless.
      ScanBack