AT&T has reportedly been tapped to carry Amazon's rumored smartphone — expected to be unveiled at a special presentation Wednesday.
"In the last hour we've learned the device may already have an exclusive carrier ... AT&T will exclusively carry Amazon smartphone." (Via KNBC)
The Journal cited people "familiar" with the plans while breaking the news only a day before the big reveal. If confirmed, AT&T will be the exclusive carrier of Amazon's first-ever handset. (Via Amazon)
Presumably, a two-year contract with the carrier will become the next "feature" rumored to be paired with the smartphone.
Other nerd-drooling, yet unconfirmed specs include a 3-D interface made possible by the phone's four built-in cameras, as reported by BGR. TechCrunch added those cameras might be used for facial tracking and allow users to tilt their heads to reveal content.
The New York Times suspected this practical feature: better, more intuitive shopping via your phone that "aims to close any remaining gap between the impulse to buy and the completed act."
By signing with AT&T, Amazon will take a page out of Apple's book. The carrier helped launch the company's flagship iPhone back in 2007.
But choosing AT&T over others might be more about history as well. AT&T already shares a relationship with the online retail giant, supplying data service for its line of Kindle tablets. Plus, in April it was reported Amazon was cooking up a "Prime Data" plan, which could entice members of its existing Prime membership program. (Via AT&T, Amazon)
ZDNet says AT&T's betting on Amazon's phone to bring innovation back into the saturated market, but the gamble could pay off for the carrier, too.
"If Amazon's smartphone proves a popular novelty in a world where smartphones are all reaching the point of looking the same, the exclusivity deal could once again provide the carrier with a leg-up against rivals." (Via ZDNet)
The event takes place in Seattle Wednesday. Amazon is expected to start shipping its device by September.