Amazon Considers Introducing A Free Android Smartphone For The Masses

Free phones are everywhere, really. For years now, downmarket handsets have been given away for $0.00 with a new two-year agreement, as a means to milk customers for subscription fees while enticing them with a gratis handset. Even smartphones, if aged enough, can fall to that magical free price point, but this is different. A new report suggests that Amazon could be building a high-end phone that it would give away for free. Of course, Amazon is unique in the technology industry. It barely turns a profit, yet its stock price is crushing it, customers love it, and it's expanding like crazy.

Amazon has tried unconventional pricing methods before, most recently with its ad-supported Kindle sales. Customers who opt for these can save $25 or so on a tablet, but they'll see ads across their lock screen. By and large, consumers have been okay with the trade-off and the subsequent savings. Plans are reportedly still early, so it's unlcear whether or not the "free" phone would be attached to a lengthy agreement. That said, Amazon is hoping to figure out a way to sell the phone for nothing with or without a contract, enabling it to swell its ecosystem and get more people into the Kindle universe.

A launch date is still up in the air, but the price is well-known. It's free, after all.