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More Amazon Fire Phones Are Coming, Jeff Bezos Signals

Bezos takes a trip down memory lane to explain.

Jason Del Rey has been a business journalist for 15 years and has covered Amazon, Walmart, and the e-commerce industry for the last decade. He was a senior correspondent at Vox.

Amazon’s Fire phone has been an indisputable flop. CEO Jeff Bezos doesn’t care.

Bezos said on Tuesday at Business Insider’s conference in New York that “it’s going to take several iterations” before he’ll be able to judge the Fire phone, the device that led to Amazon taking a $170 million write-down.

“Ask me in some number of years,” he told interviewer Henry Blodget, CEO of Business Insider, in which Bezos is an investor.

Bezos wouldn’t call Fire a failure. Instead, he made a point of mentioning all the initiatives that have taken time at Amazon. Bezos cited Amazon’s early auctions business and Zshops listings business as ideas that did not work but led to the creation of the third-party marketplace that now comprises 40 percent of Amazon’s overall revenue.

When Blodget pressed Bezos for what mistakes the company might have made with the phone, Bezos again took a trip down memory lane instead of answering the question. Along the way, he stressed the importance of encouraging risk-taking at Amazon.

“I have made billions of dollars of failures at … literally,” Bezos said. “You might remember or Kozmo.”

“None of those thing are fun. They also don’t matter. Companies that don’t continue to experiment, companies that don’t embrace failure, eventually get” desperate and “make a Hail Mary bet at the end of their corporate existence.”

This article originally appeared on

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