It seems like only yesterday we were planning for the Mayan apocalypse, but like so many other products, the 14th b’ak’tun (next era) has been delayed due to bugs and lack of pre-orders. Yet if you talked to some pundits back in 2011, they’d have told you that the end of days was coming out in Q4 of 2012, along with its competitor, BlackBerry 10.
No doubt, in 2013, several long-rumored products will come to market. However, next year won’t be the year for these 13 gadgets and technologies.
The Speculation: After its success selling Amazon-branded Android tablets, the company will launch a smartphone that puts its content front and center and encouraging you to shop wherever you go. Some have even suggested that the company will make it easy to scan prices when you're in a retail store, just so you can see if Amazon sells the item cheaper. Taiwan Economic News recently reported that Foxconn will be manufacturing the handset, which will launch in Q3 or 2013 for $100 to $200.
Why It Won't Happen in 2013: Breaking into the U.S. smartphone market with any hope of success is extremely difficult for new players. The four major carriers rule their networks with an iron fist, either forcing phone vendors to go along with their software strategies or outright rejecting products that don't meet their immediate business goals. Just ask Google, which decided to release the Nexus 4 as an unlocked device rather than deal with AT&T and Verizon. (A subsidized version is available for T-Mobile.)
From a business perspective, playing in the smartphone space makes little sense for Amazon as the company's goal is not to sell phones but to sell media and dry goods through its online store. The company already has its shopping app preloaded as crapware on many Android devices, and the company could leverage these placements in 2013 by finally bringing Amazon instant video to Android devices and adding a price scanning app to the mix. Why spend money building and supporting a smartphone when you can just get users of other phones to buy the all the same products from you?
More: Top 10 Smartphones