http://www.engadget.com/2012/11/03/editorial-amazon-and-google-are-undermining-mobile-pricing/ I think the root cause of this problem lies with the US market. Phones were $600 for a long time. Before smartphones yeah the top end feature phones would be $350-$450 easily too. And somehow because the US population sees these devices only through contract pricing, we're somehow taught to think that they deserve to really be this cheap. Google and Amazon's pricing models are more to penetrate the US market. Apple's somehow had no problem at all, but it seems in part to play game with Apple, Google and Amazon's had to lower prices to ridiculous levels. I do think it hurts us partially because now we excuse Google's Nexus 7 features and Nexus 4 features with "well it's so cheap, what do you expect?" I don't think a market like this which we want every bell and whistle can function if we want dirt cheap phones. What happens to mid and lower end phones? It's kinda unfortunate.