Amazon's Prime Exclusive Phones Are Worth Buying Now

These handsets will cost $20 more, but they now come without lock screen ads.

As anyone who's purchased a Kindle or Fire tablet knows, opting to let Amazon display ads on your lock screen can save you a bundle. It's a practice the company carried over to its Prime Exclusive phones. Even with the ads, these unlocked handsets were already a decent deal for Prime members — especially when the major carriers have begun locking devices again.

Recently, Amazon announced it's taking the ads off these phones. Should you pick up one of these devices? Read on to find out more.

No More Lock Screen Ads

Some users claimed lock screen ads were not a big inconvenience, especially considering the lower cost of the phones. However, Amazon has decided to do away with those ads, opting instead to raise the price of its Prime Exclusive phones by $20. Previously, you had to pay a $50 fee to take the ads off. What's more, Amazon is offering a $50 credit to anyone who previously paid to remove the ads from their device.

Amazon is offering a $50 credit to anyone who previously paid to remove the ads from their device.

So why is Amazon dropping the ads? The megaretailer apparently wants to make it easier to use different unlocking technologies. With facial recognition and fingerprint scanners being implemented on more devices, lock screens were already becoming outdated. Furthermore, removing the ads will allow customers to customize their lock screens — that feature was previously blocked in order to leave room for the ads.

Prime Phones Can Be a Lot Cheaper

Our research suggests that Amazon's Prime Exclusive phones are usually a good buy, but there are caveats. For example, some of the models Amazon sells are only the cheapest because they aren't available anywhere else. Still, this is a very appealing way to buy a new unlocked phone, as opposed to browsing the refurbs on eBay.

SEE ALSO: Amazon Prime Benefits You May Not Know About

One instance where Amazon definitely wins is the LG G6. Outside of Black Friday specials, we've seen Amazon offer this device for around $400. Even with the changes to the program tacking on another $20, it's still far cheaper than buying this device through the major carriers.

For instance, the next best deal is at Sprint, where you'll pay $480 as of this article's writing. T-Mobile charges $550, AT&T charges $585, and Verizon commands a whopping $672. If you're in the market for an unlocked phone and you have Prime, you should definitely check out Amazon before you buy a phone through your carrier.

Readers, what do you think about Amazon's Prime Exclusive phones? Are you happy they're doing away with the ads? Let us know in the comments below.

Julie Ramhold
Senior Staff Writer/Consumer Analyst

Julie's work has been featured on CNBC, GoBankingRates, Kiplinger, Marketwatch, Money, The New York Times, Real Simple, US News, WaPo, WSJ, Yahoo!, and more. She's extolled the virtues of DealNews in interviews with Cheddar TV, GMA, various podcasts, and affiliates across the United States, plus one in Canada.
DealNews may be compensated by companies mentioned in this article. Please note that, although prices sometimes fluctuate or expire unexpectedly, all products and deals mentioned in this feature were available at the lowest total price we could find at the time of publication (unless otherwise specified).


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The problem I have is more with the Amazon bloatware. On a 16gb phone there is only 10gb left for personal apps and files. the bloatware also uses more ram leaving less for normal operations. Using an SD card reduces response time and battery life. Maybe some of the newer phones won't have these issues.
I literally just picked up my LG G6 from an Amazon locker less than an hour ago. Thank you so much for this.. I saw their regular price on their site earlier but yesterday I saw your post and looked at their phones and the G6 is great. It's also interesting to note their G6+ (128gb version) is listed as $519 on the prime phone exclusive page but is actually $465 if you add to cart. Something to think about.
Your headline doesn't make much sense. If they are worth buying now at +$20, why weren't they worth buying at their original discounted price with the ads. I get that people don't like ads, but these were completely unobtrusive and never got in the way of using the phone. So, to me, it's a loss of a great deal.
Bought two pre owned Moto 4 phone w/Amazon for $200.
I was able to get my LG-G6 from T-Mobile when they had a deal that was BOGO. So I ended up paying $500 for two phones.