At this point, it’s probably safe to say that the Amazon Fire phone isn’t a runaway hit. Heck, it’s probably not even a regular hit. There are some folks that bought the device, though, and tonight we’ve got some good news for those people.
Updates are now rolling out to both the AT&T version of the Amazon Fire phone and the unlocked flavor, bumping them up to Fire OS 3.6.5 and 3.6.8, respectively. The updates contain the same batch of improvements, which is large in the number and in the scope of new features that they add:
Translate text and identify famous artwork with Firefly
- Text translation from/to: English, French, German, Italian, and Spanish, and artwork recognition for 2,000 famous paintings with info available from Wikipedia. To learn how to use Firefly, go to Identify Movies, Music, Products & More with Firefly.
Take the perfect picture with Best Shot
- See three versions of a given photo to choose the perfect shot. To learn how to use Best Shot, go to Take Photos & Personal Videos.
Enable or disable SMS / MMS settings
- You can now turn character counts and MMS on or off. To learn about SMS/MMS, go to Messaging.
Select additional keyboard languages
- Choose from seven preloaded keyboard languages and 49 additional keyboard languages to download. To learn how to download a keyboard, go to Customize Your Language & Keyboard.
Block unwanted phone numbers
- Decline unwanted calls from any given contact. To learn how to block phone calls, go to Review Your Call History.
Add custom ringtones to your phone
- Add custom ringtones from the Amazon Appstore to your Fire phone. To learn more, go to Manage Ringtones & Notifications.
View more information from the lock screen
- Control music directly from the lock screen, and configure your phone to wake up when a new notification arrives. To learn about the lock screen, go to Customize the Lock Screen.
Write and edit documents with WPS Office
- Edit documents using the new, preloaded WPS Office app. To learn more, go to Docs.
Connect to a virtual private network (VPN) at work
- Connect to a secure, corporate VPN from your Fire using the native IPSec / L2TP VPN client to stay productive while on the go. To learn how to use the VPN feature, go to Set Up a VPN.
Sync calendars across Amazon devices registered to your Amazon account
- Create appointments that are automatically synced across supported Fire phones and Fire tablets registered to your Amazon account with Amazon Cloud Calendar. To learn how to use Amazon Cloud Calendar, go to Calendar.
Read your Kindle books in one continuous scroll
- Read and scroll through Kindle books without ever having to touch the screen. To learn how to use Auto-Scroll, go to One-Handed Shortcuts.
Improved battery life
- Dozens of systems updates for enhanced battery performance.
Bug fixes and user interface improvements
- Hundreds of other bug fixes and user interface improvements.
There are some biggies included in that list, like the ability to block phone numbers and connect to a VPN. Also included are battery like improvements, bug fixes and UI tweaks, which likely aren’t quite as noticeable but are just as major. If you’ve got an Amazon Fire phone and haven’t yet updated, head into Settings > Device > Install System Updates > Check Now to see if you’ve got this new update waiting for you.