If you don’t understand why Amazon is releasing its first smartphone as an exclusive device for AT&T, you aren’t alone. T-Mobile CEO John Legere took to Twitter on Tuesday to bash Amazon for its reported decision to go with AT&T as its exclusive carrier for the new smartphone it will unveil on Wednesday.
“Whew! Amazon doesn’t know what they just signed up for,” wrote the abrasive¬†wireless executive. “Remember the Facebook phone? Yikes.”
The “Facebook phone” Legere’s referring to is the HTC First, the Facebook-centric device that released last year exclusively on AT&T and that was one of the most infamous smartphone flops in recent history. In fact, sales for the First were so horrific that AT&T even decided to discontinue sales of the phone after just a month.
In followup tweets, Legere made clear that his problem with Amazon’s decision lay more with rival carrier AT&T than with Amazon’s smartphone itself.
“Exclusivity sucks for customers,” Legere wrote. “Exclusivity on AT&T sucks for the industry… Let’s hope Amazon doesn’t fall victim to the AT&T curse that is the Facebook phone.”
UPDATE: It’s worth noting, as Business Insider’s Steve Kovach does, that T-Mobile has exclusive smartphones of its own. So while Legere may have a point about carrier exclusives being bad for consumers, it’s not as though his company is doing anything differently.