Amazon is getting ready to release its first smart phone, the Fire. Consumer Reports has started checking out the phone in its labs. Its cell phone team is excited about some of the phone’s features, like dynamic perspective. It gives the phone a 3D look. They’re also intrigued by Firefly, which helps you identify objects in front of you by scanning them. It can even identify music and movies by listening to them.
The company plans to make on-demand music streaming available as part of its Prime service by June or July.
So how well do the features work? Firefly sometimes had trouble identifying movies, songs and objects in front of it. And the hands-free gesture feature is a bit clunky. It didn’t always work.
Another feature of the Fire is called Mayday, which is free video tech support with live people. They can access your phone and fix problems or change settings while you watch.
So, is all this new technology worth switching over? Consumer Reports take so far: this is a really fun phone with a lot of unique features. But some people won’t like the fact that it can’t run popular Google apps like YouTube or Gmail.
As soon as the phone is available at retail, Consumer Reports will begin its in-depth testing for sound and camera quality and battery life.