AmazonA spokesman for Inc. said Sunday the online retail giant won’t launch a smartphone this year, and that if it did launch one in the future, it “would not be free.” The statement by Amazon came 48 hours after we reported that the company was considering introducing a smartphone for free to consumers, according to people with knowledge of its smartphone development efforts. The company previously declined to comment to us. The statement is the first time that Amazon has said it will not offer a phone this year, addressing long-running reports it has been working on one. The Amazon spokesman declined to elaborate on the statement, including about what types of discounts it could offer and what pricing arrangements it has considered in the past.

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