Amazon's New Fire Phone Lets You Scan Something Then Immediately Buy It

Jun 18, 2014

Amazon's new Fire Phone comes with a new feature, called Firefly, that lets you scan physical items, then immediately buy them via Amazon -- exactly the kind of feature you'd expect on a phone made by an e-commerce behemoth.

Firefly can already recognize up to 100 million different objects, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said in a demonstration Wednesday.

With a press of a button, Fire users can scan not only physical objects, but also songs, movies and television episodes through their sounds, according to a press release. Firefly can also detect printed text, including URLs and phone numbers, saving users the time spent on dialing digits or typing web addresses -- so long, VR codes.

Amazon has made Firefly's software development kit (SDK) available to developers to encourage further innovations with the scanning technology. MyFitnessPal, a smartphone app that tracks diet and exercise, is planning to provide nutritional data for objects that Firefly detects, The Verge reports.

The Fire Phone, available July 25, also offers free unlimited photo storage.

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