What makes the Fire Phone a particularly troubling adventure, however, is that Amazon’s CEO seemingly lost track of the essential driver of his company’s brand. It’s understandable that Bezos would want to give Amazon a premium shine, but to focus on a high-end product, instead of the kind of service that has always distinguished the company, proved misguided. “We can’t compete head to head with Apple,” says a high-level source at Lab126. “There is a branding issue: Apple is premium, while our customers want a great product at a great price.”
The Fire Phone failed not only because it was expensive, but also because its standout features were silly gimmicks, and everything else was just nondescript and boring. You can’t sell gimmicky, nondescript, and boring for that kind of money.