New rumors say that Amazon has purchased the company behind EVI, which is one of the many Siri alternatives for Android, for $26 million.
Amazon has also been rumored to launch a smartphone ever since last year, but that never materialized, and now everyone is expecting them to launch the said smartphone this year. This new app they've purchased could solve one of the big problems with Amazon selling a smartphone.
The reason why it didn't make much sense for Amazon to have a smartphone before is because you have a much smaller real estate on a phone, and it's not as easy to buy stuff, or watch movies and read books, like you can do on their Kindle Fire tablets.
In fact, the reason why they even started with the tablets first is because they thought tablets are the perfect "buying machines". People can browse the web on a larger screen on them, they can read the books on a screen about as large as the regular Kindles, and they can also watch movies on the go.
A smartphone, however, is much smaller, or at least it used to be, because now it seems the standard display sizes are going up to 5", which opens up the opportunity for Amazon to come into the market with such a big smartphone, too. But a Siri-like app would probably make purchasing stuff from Amazon even easier, if they execute well on it. People could just give a search command to search a product in Amazon, and then say "buy" to buy that product. The whole buying process could be very easy, which would make up for the smaller screen of the smartphone.
Amazon knows that people are not going to buy regular Kindles forever, as the multi-purpose tablets and smartphones become more popular, so they need to be in the game, one way or another. It looks like they want to be with both a tablet and a smartphone in the mobile market, though, which increases their chance somewhat for their devices to remain relevant in the booming mobile market.