After poor sales of the new, much-hyped Fire Phone drove the online retail giant’s share price down by 10 percent, led them to post $170M in operating losses related to its launch, and left them with $83M worth of unsold mobile devices in their warehouses, Amazon admits that their pricing plan played a major part in the smartphones poor sales.
The Price is Wrong, B!t©h
David Limp, Amazon’s Senior VP of Devices (that’s a thing?), said in a recent Fortune piece, “We didn’t get the price right.” Bob Barker is spinning in his grave right now. Or, he would be, if he were dead and buried. He’s still alive as I write this. And if he gets cremated, then forget the whole thing.
“People come to expect a great value, and we […] mismatched expectations,” Limp continued. “We thought we had it right. But we’re also willing to say, ‘We missed.’ And so we corrected.”
To that end, Amazon dropped the price of the 32GB model, originally priced at $199, to just 99 cents just two months after the smartphone’s launch. For real. Limp noted that this, unsurprisingly, has improved sales considerably.
Also, Maybe Just Not That Great
Slow sales can also be blamed on the many, many criticisms the Fire Phone has received. Most reviews pointed to an awkward interface, low screen resolution, lots of unnecessary “fluff” features, and not enough useful functionality. It’s not an iPhone, so it does have that going for it—seriously, everybody take it down a notch on that garbage.
“We are going to keep iterating software features to get it better and better,” Limp said. “Each release, we’re learning. Beyond that, I leave it out there to see what people think.”
However, Limp made no of those two little dip$#!t hipster kids in the commercials for the Fire Phone. Many will likely agree that that factor is just as likely to have stifled returns. “Hey guys, buy this phone. It turns children into pretentious a-holes. Just think what it can do for you!”