Amazon set off an Internet hunt on Wednesday releasing a short video promoting a mystery device to be launched on June 18. It doesn’t show the product, and says nothing about it.
The 50-second clip — available on YouTube — shows people looking down at something — and moving their heads, and shoulders in wonder. “It just moved with me,” says one of them.
Another teaser is an image showing a corner of the device — just a tiny corner, that doesn't give away much except that it belongs to a slim, smartphone-like object.
It resembles an image of a leaked Amazon smartphone earlier this year, but that was never confirmed or denied. And this image is just what it is: a tiny teaser.
Speculation has been rife for months about Amazon planning to launch a smartphone, possibly with 3-D display, that responds when moved or to eye or head movements.
Samsung and HTC have tried this before.
The video ends with an invitation to “Request an invitation to our launch event”. Anyone can apply, of course, not just reporters and analysts. That’s a first.
And, the other first, noted industry watchers, was the video itself. Companies, such as Apple and Microsoft, tend to be obsessively secretive about new products.
They don’t even let out teasers such as the video.
But Amazon is known to do things differently.
In the application for invitation to the launch, Amazon has given away a few more teasers that tech sleuths are using it to pry out the mysterious product.
“Describe an innovative way in which you have used gyroscopes, accelerometers, or other device sensors in your app development,” it asks of developers.
And this: “Are you interested in developing apps utilizing a new type of sensor?”
Any pointers, there? That’s all there is for now.