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It's been awhile since we've heard this one, but a report this week is dragging out new details about Amazon's ambitions to release a smartphone of its own to follow up the company's Kindle Fire success.
Bloomberg is reporting that Amazon is developing its own smartphone with Chinese manufacturer Foxconn International Holdings Ltd., the company who assembles Apple's iconic iPhone, among others.
"Amazon is seeking to complement the smartphone strategy by acquiring patents that cover wireless technology and would help it defend against allegations of infringement," said the usual people familiar with the situation who decline to be named.
The report isn't clear if Amazon plans to follow up its initial success with the Kindle Fire, which ran a forked version of Android largely indistinguishable from anything released by Google and its OEM partners. Given the company's investment in its own Android-based Appstore, however, it would make sense.
Amazon recently attempted to purchase wireless patents owned by InterDigital Inc. of Pennsylvania, a sale that instead fetched the tidy sum of $375 million from Intel. Sources claim Amazon continues to have discussions from other patent holders.
"Adding patents would help Amazon protect itself against lawsuits alleging illegal use of technology," Bloomberg notes. "Amazon has been involved in five patent-related cases this year, and 20 cases last year," according to the news outlet's own data.
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter