Amazon Fire phone test: will it make you a shopaholic?

Some say it could be the long-awaited iPhone killer.

Others, a bit more realistic, say this could be the smartphone that finally challenges Apple -- more than the Samsung Galaxy S5 did.

It's the brand new Amazon Fire phone, now on sale at Amazon and AT&T stores.

We Test It Out

Some say it could be a game-changer.

"The graphics are really good, really nice. Clear and crisp," said Amy Miller.

It was an instant hit with the lunch crowd we showed it to.

"Overall it looks pretty cool," said one man. "It's nice as far as being thin," said another.

Special Features

Open the box and you see its large screen, thin build, and its 3D homepage controlled by how you tilt it.

But its standout feature is its connection with all things Amazon.

It comes with Kindle Apps, a built-in Amazon Shopping Cart, and another app called Firefly.

That lets you point the phone at something you see, and buy it instantly from Amazon. In many cases, it is supposed to recognize the product. If it doesn't, it works as a bar code scanner to identify it.

"That's really cool that it can just recognize with one click, then you can buy it," one woman said.

Firefly Feature Tested

We tested it by pointing the phone at a bottle of water.

The app correctly recognized the bottle as Nestle Pure Life Lemon Splash, and showed us a case of it for sale on

"Fantastic," one man said.

But with some other items -- like Ashley Cole's bag of trail mix-- we had to scan the bar code for it to link to the item. It could not recognize the mix.

Once it scanned the code and linked to Amazon, Cole found a good deal pop up on the phone. "It's a lot cheaper than what I buy it for at the grocery store," Cole said.

Unfortunately, it failed to recognize Amy Miller's Coach handbag, even though we tried from different angles. Perhaps too many Coach bags look alike and it could not differentiate it from others.

But Miller loved the quick links to Amazon.

"It brings it right up, you can buy it with one click," she said.

Still, she and her friend wondered if it could turn them into "shopaholics."

They worry they could end up buying every cool fashion accessory they see.

The Bottom Line

The new phone comes with one free year of Amazon Prime, which is great news if you like shopping and want free delivery.

But critics say the whole goal of this phone is to get you to shop Amazon and spend more money with them, some saying Amazon should really pay us to have the phone

It is now on sale exclusively through AT&T, for $199 with a 2-year contract.


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