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Amazon’s Fire Phone Receives Major Update Including Text Translation With Firefly

December 17, 2014 - Written By Justin Diaz

Now that the AT&T exclusivity for the Amazon Fire phone is gone and the cost for the device has dropped significantly compared to what it was at launch, more people might be inclined to consider purchasing the device. If you’re already a user of the Fire phone then you’re in for a pretty major update to the device that seems to be bringing in plenty of new changes and feature adds, so we’d look out for this one to hit your notifications. The Update is reportedly hitting both the AT&T and the GSM unlocked models so no one is getting left out here. We would take that as good news, depending on how you feel about the Fire phone.

One of the more notable changes we’d say is the ability to use the Firefly feature to translate text as well as identify famous artwork. Using Firefly, one could translate text in English to French, German, Italian or Spanish, and to/from any of those last four languages to one another or English. Whether or not it works in real-time for word translation like Word Lens we can’t say since we don’t have a Fire phone to test it on. You’ll find other big changes too like VPN (virtual private network) support, the ability to read your kindle books in one continuous scroll and what most would consider an important change, improved battery life. Again though, we don’t have any way to test how improved it actually is so if there is a reader out there who can attest to the change’s improvement let us know.

Other less useful features (but still useful to some degree) are things like the ability to block calls from unwanted numbers. Scratch that, I would use this constantly as I get all kinds of crazy calls from numbers trying to reach various people other than myself. Custom ringtones have also been added, and you can now also sync calendars across devices that are all connected with the same Amazon account, which is great especially if you have a Kindle Fire tablet as well. There are more changes than the ones we have listed and you can check out the full changelog at the original Amazon post about the update if you wish. Although the Fire sale on the Fire phone has already ended, you can still pick up an unlocked GSM model with 32GB of storage for $229.00 which isn’t too bad of a price. Also, don’t forget that you still have a few more days (until Dec. 21st) to grab a Chromecast off of Amazon and get the free $20 in Play Store credits, an offer you can also find on Google Play.