There are now some solid smartphone options available on the Prime Exclusive Phones site, and these prices will change tomorrow.
Amazon will remove ads from the lock screens of phones from Amazon's Exclusive Phones program on Wednesday. The excitement wore off though when customers realized the caveat: Amazon Prime Exclusive phones come with lock screen ads and promotions, which is why the prices were drastically discounted. For those devices already out in the world, updates will start rolling out next week that remove the ads. Here's the full statement. And in perhaps even more exciting news, customers who now own a Prime Exclusive device will receive a free update over the next week that will take away lockscreen ads. I have good news for you on that front that might take away the vomiting - lockscreen ads and offers are going away on Prime Exclusive phones. If you're familiar with Prime Exclusive Phones you'll know that these are discounted phones for Prime members.More news: Nunes: We're Going to Ask Court for Transcripts of Page FISA Proceedings
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In its FAQ, Amazon spins the change as "Amazon being nice" by saying, "This change allows you to personalize your Prime Exclusive Phone's lock screen and to more easily use your phone's unlock technologies, such as facial recognition and fingerprint sensors". The reason Amazon's done this is likely different from what you'd expect. That can be removed, and you can hide the Amazon apps if you don't use them.
But now, Amazon is ditching the lock screen ads for its Prime Exclusive phones, making the deals far more enticing. The bootloaders are locked down, but that's not hugely important to most buyers. Of course, you'll still be left with Amazon's Android apps, a dedicated widget, and a few notifications that all show adverts, but at least you won't be greeted by them every time you check your phone.