The reason Amazon’s Fire Phone has failed to impress is that it spent so much on the “gimmick” of dynamic perspective that it only had enough cash left to build an otherwise mediocre phone – the conclusion of a component analysis of a teardown of the phone.

Dynamic perspective allows the phone to detect and respond to head movements when viewing the phone’s display, but has been widely seen by reviewers as a novelty or gimmick.

Following iFixit’s earlier teardown of the Fire Phone, re/code has been given sight of a component costing following a separate teardown by research form IHS. This reveals that the total component cost of the Fire Phone is around $205 – more expensive even than Apple’s flagship iPhone 5S. The cost of the dynamic perspective technology left little room for anything but mid-range specs in the rest of the handset, says IHS … 


This feature is driven by four sensors, one in each corner, which are used to determine the user’s perspective relative to the device. The sensors were supplied by Omnivision. “It’s the one … unique thing about this phone,” says Andrew Rassweiler, the IHS analyst who supervised the teardown. “Whether or not users find it useful is another question. Other than that, it’s a pretty standard mid-range phone from a hardware perspective.”

The screen might be surrounded by clever tech, but the display itself is a relatively low-end one. While Samsung spent $63 on the highly-rated display of the Galaxy S5, Amazon spent just $27 on the 720p display of the Fire Phone.

About the Author

Ben Lovejoy's favorite gear