Amazon and Blu Products on Wednesday announced a new unlocked Android smartphone. Dubbed the R1 HD, it will be offered through Amazon for a mere $50 for Prime customers. Say what?

As it already does with the Kindle and Fire brands of its ereaders and tablets, Amazon will discount the cost of the R1 HD if you agree to a version with lock screen ads.


So just what goes into a $50 Android phone, you ask? As it turns out, more than you might expect. After all, it’s Blu Products we’re talking about; these guys excel in bang for the buck.


  • Network: (GSM/GPRS/EDGE) 850/900/1800/1900 MHz, (4G HSPA+ 42Mbps) 850/1700/1900/2100 MHz, (4G LTE Up to 150Mbps) 2/4/7/17, 12 will be added via Over-the-Air Update (OTA)
  • Display: 5.0-inch HD 720 x 1280, 293 ppi, 420-nit
  • Processor: Mediatek 6735, 1.3 GHz Quad-Core with Mali-T720 graphics GPU
  • OS: Android Marshmallow 6.0, upgradable to Android N
  • Camera: Rear – 8.0 megapixel, with LED Flash, (1.12mm pixel size, 1/4 inch sensor, 2.0mm aperture) HD [email protected] video recording, Front – 5.0 megapixel, with LED Flash, 84° Wide Angle
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi b/g/n, GPS, Bluetooth v4.0, Hotspot, FM Radio, VoLTE support will be added via Over-the-Air Update (OTA)
  • Memory: 1GB/2GB RAM, 8GB/16GB Internal Memory
  • Dimensions: 143 x 70.7 x 8.5 mm
  • Battery: Li-Polymer 2500 mAh
  • Available Colors: Midnight Black

Available starting July 12, the R1 HD features a 5-inch display at 720p HD resolution and an 8-megapixel rear camera. Internally you’ll find a quad-core processor with 1GB RAM and 8GB storage. The phone runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow and offers support for two SIM cards. Unlocked and ready for your GSM carrier of choice, the R1 HD can work with AT&T, T-Mobile, or any of their respective partners.


The R1 HD will carry a retail price of $100, but will be sold exclusively to Amazon Prime customers for $50 with ads and promotions appearing on the lock screen. A variant of the phone packs twice the storage (16GB) and RAM (2GB) and only runs $10 more.

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