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Everyone who’s serious about owning the customer needs their own smartphone platform. Or at least that’s what it’s starting to look like given the recent Amazon smartphone development rumors.

Today the Wall Street Journal is reporting that Amazon is actually in the testing phase with suppliers in Asia, which would seem to put an eventual product launch right smack dab in the middle of the Christmas shopping season. And with almost five million units of Kindle Fire sold last holiday season, Amazon knows how to move a holiday product.

A new Amazon device would add yet another twist to the ever-more-complex smartphone platform wars. On the surface, it’s almost guaranteed to be an Android device, bolstering Google’s Android platform numbers.

Above: Amazon’s Jeff Bezos with the original Kindle

Image Credit: VentureBeat/ Devindra Hardawar

However, like the Kindle Fire, Amazon’s smartphone will certainly be a Google-less Android. Running a customized version of Android that hooks into Amazon natively for content and apps, an Amazon smartphone  would reduce the company’s current dependence on Apple and Google-owned mobile platforms to deliver digital products to the increasingly important mobile market.

It’s the ultimate corporate jiujitsu: using the enemy’s strengths against them.

Google, of course, is firing back at the Fire with the Nexus tablet, by all accounts a better device than Fire, and is pushing its own Nexus phones in an attempt to give users a full, complete, and great Android experience.

But Amazon has shown significant capability to launch and market device platforms, winning significant consumer and enterprise wallet share.

In the mobile industry, there are two things we know for sure: Smartphones are eating the market alive, and the platform wars have just begun.

Image credit: Ralf Juergen Kraft/ShutterStock

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