Amazon Preps Smartphone, With FoxConn’s Help: Report

Simon Dawson | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Online retail giant Amazon is planning to jump into the competitive smartphone market next year, a report says -- with help from one of Apple's key allies.

The Chinese manufacturer Foxconn, which also assembles the tech giant's iPhone, is reportedly lending a hand to Amazon by manufacturing its smartphone. Foxconn is expected to ship up to five million units in 2013, according to a report from Taiwan Economic News. The mobile device will be priced in the $100 to $200 range, the story said.

Over the last year, there has been rampant speculation of an Amazon produced smartphone. Some analysts say a smartphone is an obvious next move for the company. However, there are concerns that a move into cell phone hardware could weigh heavily on Amazon, due to high-costs.

"It requires carrier distribution and developing apps like maps and search, which are potentially large investments for Amazon," Colin Sebastian, a senior analyst for R.W. Baird, told CNBC earlier this year.

Amazon is already in the tablet space, competing against Apple's iPad and Google's Nexus tablet.

Amazon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.