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Amazon is removing ads from its Prime Exclusive Phones

Ads on anyone's existing Prime phone will also be disabled in an update.

The Nokia 6 will no longer have ads when purchased from Amazon's line of Prime Exclusive Phones.
The Nokia 6 will no longer have ads when purchased from Amazon's line of Prime Exclusive Phones.
Juan Garzon/CNET

If you wanted a cheaper phone from Amazon, that used to come at the cost of having ads take over your lock screen. That won't be the case anymore, as Amazon is removing them from both new phones and from ones customers have already purchased.

Amazon said Tuesday that its line of Prime Exclusive Phones, which include devices like the Moto X4 and the Nokia 6, will no longer include these advertisements, but will instead see a price increase of $20. For anyone who's already purchased a phone from the line, a "February 2018 update" that'll appear starting Wednesday will disable both the ads and lock screen offers.

"This change allows you to personalize your Prime Exclusive Phone's lock screen and to more easily use your phone's unlock technologies, such as facial recognition and fingerprint sensors," Amazon said on a customer support page.

Customers who already have a Prime Exclusive Phone will need to make sure they have the most recent version of the Amazon Offers app installed through the Google Play Store. That will help ensure the ads die on those phones.

Amazon said the line of Prime Exclusive Phones will continue to have cheaper pricing for Prime members and will be unlocked for use across US carriers. An Amazon spokesperson told CNET that despite the price increase, the phones will still cost less than their list price. The phones will also continue to ship with an Amazon Widget installed that includes the retailer's offers, but that can be easily removed.

The company launched this line of phones in 2016, originally offering the devices at either the cheaper cost with advertisements baked in or ad-free at a higher cost.

First published Feb. 6, 10:38 a.m. PT.
Update, 11:55 a.m. PT: Adds comment from Amazon, includes the $20 price increase and that the Amazon Widget will continue to ship with the phone.

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