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Amazon's smartphone reportedly favors tilting gestures over buttons

Amazon's smartphone reportedly favors tilting gestures over buttons

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After leaking the first photos of a prototype, BGR is back today claiming to have more details about Amazon's upcoming smartphone. That includes a deeper look at the unique gestures and tilt-based user interface made possible by the four infrared cameras on the front of the device. Suffice it to say, you're going to be tilting this phone early and often.

Amazon's proprietary cameras and head-tracking system will work alongside various sensors to create a 3D effect as the device is shifted around in your hand. "By tilting the handset in different directions while the device is in use, Amazon’s interface will display additional information on the screen without the user having to touch or tap anything," BGR says. That may sound confusing, but the idea is to make one-handed use far easier than what you'd get from many top smartphones today.

You'll be tilting Amazon's smartphone early and very often

BGR also offers up a number of examples. Tilting the phone when in the email and calendar apps will reveal labels beneath each icon to describe what they do. When you're composing a text in the messaging app, a tilting motion will offer quick access to the phone's camera roll. Move the phone while searching Amazon's maps app and you'll reportedly see the Yelp rating each result has earned from customers. Similarly, moving the phone in your hand while in the video app will reveal a given film's IMDB rating.

BGR claims that Amazon has essentially eliminated any need for a traditional menu button with this no-touch approach. Still, it sounds like there will be a significant learning curve for consumers, as very few devices on the market use motion to such an extreme degree. The site also notes that Amazon is working on an app that uses the device's rear camera to capture printed text in the real world and convert that image into an editable note using OCR technology. Amazon is apparently planning to announce its smartphone this summer, so we'll know how accurate BGR's preview is within a few months.

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