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Amazon smartphone to launch in 2014 with 3D gesture control features

Talk of an Amazon smartphone has been coming and going for over a year now, with the online giant recently launching its second wave of Kindle Fire tablets and no smartphone in sight.

Now, AppleInsider, a site with a good track record for Amazon rumours, reports that the phone will arrive between April and June of 2014. Furthermore, it says that Amazon will mimic Samsung’s success with the Galaxy S4 by offering eye tracking and 3D gesture controls in its first smartphone.

The report suggests that Amazon is currently working with compact camera manufacturers out in Asia in an attempt to get the perfect camera sensors in its phone, with LiteOn and Primax already said to be involved.

The front facing camera will not only take pictures and record video but will also track eye motion and hand gestures which take place in front of it. However, it sounds as though Amazon will take things up a notch in terms of hardware and we could see something similar to the Galaxy S4’s Air Gesture and Smart Scroll features but on a bigger scale.

Amazon is apparently trying to cram no fewer than six camera modules into its smartphone – the usual front and back cameras and four VGA cameras which will each sit at a corner of the phone’s front face. Where the Galaxy S4 uses a single front facing camera for eye and gesture tracking, Amazon’s will have four, effectively creating a much larger catchment area for gestures which will allow for a higher degree of accuracy. This could mean no more tilting the phone to get the front camera to see you properly, which we’ve no doubt most S4 owners have done in an attempt to get Smart Scroll to work!

The front and rear cameras are said to be pretty impressive, too: A 13-megapixel sensor will sit on the back, whilst a frankly ludicrous-sounding 12-megapixel sensor will sit up front. We have a feeling somebody might have missed the decimal point between the 1 and the 2, but if not there’s bound to be a meteoric rise in high quality selfies.

Details on the phone’s cameras are strong and although the four corner camera arrangement is something we’ve not yet seen on a smartphone, we feel inclined to believe AppleInsider’s report. Unnamed sources have also claimed that the phone will rock a 4.7-inch HD display and Qualcomm’s nippy Snapdragon 800 processor and whilst these are now becoming fairly standard components in high end smartphones, we’re taking these suggestions with a pinch of salt.

Amazon is expected to launch this phone alongside a more affordable model, both based on Android, in the middle of next year.

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