Nokia Lumia 900 to debut for $99 on AT&T: Report

Nokia Lumia 900 to debut for $99 on AT&T: Report

Summary: The Nokia Lumia 900 Windows Phone could debut for just $99 when it launches on AT&T on March 18, according to a (and believable) new report.

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The Boy Genius Report (BGR) site is reporting that the high-end Nokia Lumia 900 is going to debut on AT&T for $99 (including a two-year contract).

The site also is confirming the March 18 launch target date for the Lumia 900 that was first reported by Paul Thurrott at the SuperSite for Windows earlier this month.

I've seen Microsoft documentation that makes me believe both the March 18 date and the $99 price are correct.

Microsoft needs to kick-start its Windows Phone business in a major way. The company brass knows that as do we, the 1.5 percent who've already bought a Windows Phone. Microsoft execs also know Windows Phones which have debuted here in the U.S. to date have been O.K., but nothing to write home about, for the most part. (I still have a lot of love for the HTC Radar 4G, myself.) The Windows Phones that shipped last year were too high-priced compared to the competition.

But if the Lumia 900 -- with a front-facing camera, 4.3-inch AMOLED screen, tight industrial design -- comes in at $99 to start, Microsoft potentially could attract users who haven't been wowed by any Windows Phones so far.

Couple that price with Microsoft's seeming willingness to up the marketing spend this year, including paying retail salesfolk the kinds of spiffs/incentives to which many are accustomed, and maybe there's a fighting chance for Windows Phone, after all.

Tom Warren at the Verge also unearthed today what seems to be a YouTube video by a Microsoft contractor who is employing the "Smoked by Windows Phone" moves pioneered Microsoft Windows Phone evangelist Ben Rudolph at the Consumer Electronics Show. If Microsoft doesn't take the Smoked by Windows Phone campaign -- which pits Windows Phone against other non-Microsoft phones to show off its speed in completing certain common tasks -- to the retail stores this year, they're crazy. Here's hoping that video is a  yet another sign of a more aggressive marketing campaign on the phone front from the 'Soft.

Topics: Windows, Microsoft, Mobility, Nokia, Operating Systems, Software, Telcos, AT&T

About

Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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  • RE: Nokia Lumia 900 to debut for $99 on AT&T: Report

    I'm leaving verizon for this phone! Can't wait to get my hands on it! lol
    jbrock31
  • A few questions before I buy this

    1. All of my music is in iTunes. This phone works with iTunes, right?
    2. I have spent hundreds of dollars on iPhone apps. This phone will run them, right?
    3. I have a couple docks for playing music. This phone will plug into them, right?
    4. I really like FaceTime and iChat. This phone will let me communicate with my iPhone friends who use FaceTime and iChat, right?
    5. I see quite a few websites and organizations that advertise that they have an iPhone app. Even though they don't mention WP7, they probably also have a WP7 app, right?


    Now do you see the problem? I'll admit I don't know a whole lot about WP7 but come on fans of WP7, even you have to admit that the challenge faced by MS here is not a technical one. WP7 could be technically the best smartphone ever. It is too late. Apple is the 8,000lb gorilla in the market and they have it sewn shut. There is no room for any competition.
    toddybottom_z
    • those without smartphones

      Hi, good points re: how Apple and Android makers have locked folks in already. But there is a huge market of folks who don't have smartphones yet. I have a feeling this is the real target for MS and Nokia... Thanks. MJ
      Mary Jo Foley
      • RE: Nokia Lumia 900 to debut for $99 on AT&T: Report

        @Mary Jo Foley, I agree. There are far more people without a smartphone than there are with an iPhone.
        Forrestall
    • RE: Nokia Lumia 900 to debut for $99 on AT&T: Report

      I think the things you mentioned are also implies to android..if i'm not wrong even a lot of people are migrating to android from ios..
      deepu424
      • Agreed. Satisfaction rates with Android are very low

        @deepu424 <br>Most people's first Android is also their last. I suspect that some of this is due to salespeople lying to customers in order to get the "spiff" that Google has been offering them and MS is now just beginning to offer salespeople. While this may get a temporary spike in sales, it isn't a long term sales strategy. Google is finding that out right now.
        toddybottom_z
      • RE: Nokia Lumia 900 to debut for $99 on AT&T: Report

        @toddybottom_z<br>Your supposition likely applies to those individuals who let themselves be swayed by a carrier rep instead of doing themselves a favor and doing a bit of research into their real wants and needs.<br>They will likely try another "advertised" phone of some OS and then 2 years later do another ad infinitum.....
        rhonin
    • RE:Agreed. Satisfaction rates with Android are very low

      @toddybottom_z : Even the sales for Apple is also due to marketing...
      deepu424
    • RE: Nokia Lumia 900 to debut for $99 on AT&T: Report

      @toddybottom_z because people hand over all control Ishit. So, because you are a total automaton the rest of the world should be as well. Got it.
      billyniehaus
      • I like this

        @billyniehaus
        :)
        ZenithY
    • RE: Nokia Lumia 900 to debut for $99 on AT&T: Report

      @toddybottom_z <br>MS should give Google a call and find out how they managed it. Or maybe even give Apple a call to find out how they rose from nothing 5 years ago. I will agree with you that they can't seem to do it on their own.
      anono
      • From nothing? Not quite

        @anono
        "Or maybe even give Apple a call to find out how they rose from nothing 5 years ago."

        Apple did not rise from nothing 5 years ago. Apple has spent years building, developing, and fortifying their iPod, iTunes, and iTMS ecosystem. They then leveraged that ecosystem to give the iPhone a huge competitive advantage.

        And before you freak out, at no point have I suggested that this was wrong, unethical, or is in any way a negative against Apple. In fact, let me clearly, plainly, and obviously state otherwise: Apple was smart, brilliant, and deserves full credit for leveraging their dominant #1 ecosystem into new markets.

        However, it is factually incorrect to say they rose from nothing 5 years ago. That actually takes away a lot of credit that Apple deserves for all the time, effort, and money they invested in their dominant #1 ecosystem.
        toddybottom_z
    • RE: Nokia Lumia 900 to debut for $99 on AT&T: Report

      @toddybottom_z,

      I'm an Android user, and I would move to WP7 if I liked it (I haven't looked at it yet). I would lose the 10 or 11 personal apps that I have bought, but I wouldn't lose any of the music because I'm not tied to iTunes (thank God). I'll have to give it a looksee when my contract expires.
      bmonsterman
    • RE: Nokia Lumia 900 to debut for $99 on AT&T: Report

      @toddybottom_z Many people I know don't even update the software on their iphones. Those casual consumers can be won over. Not every one is a tech enthusiast!!
      jatbains
    • RE: Nokia Lumia 900 to debut for $99 on AT&T: Report

      @toddybottom_z You are aware that Android is the market leader and it only took them a couple of years to get there. Android has over 50% market share and iPhone has less than 30%. How did Android overtake iPhone so quickly if people are locked into iPhone as you claim?<br><br>1. WP excels at music. Most people's music is in MP3 format which is not locked into a platform and exporting music from iTunes to Zune software is braindead simple. Almost all music streaming services have an app for WP including Rhapsody, Zune Pass, Spotify, Rdio, etc.<br><br>2. Most people do not buy a lot of apps for their phone, especially if they are Android users. The average iPhone user lives with the apps preinstalled on the phone. And the ones that have purchased apps on their phone care more about their availability on another platform than the investment (.99-$1.99 for most apps). This isn't the same as being locked into Windows (XP, Vista, 7) where a single piece of software may have cost you hundreds and games usually start at $30 a pop. Apps are cheap and mostly free.<br><br>3. The dock issue did not prevent Android from taking over the market and none of the Android phones have compatible docks with one another. The industry is moving towards wireless docking anyway through DLNA and NFC. So for the few people who this is an issue it will be gone soon.<br><br>4. iChat and Facetime are not popular services. Most people have Skype or Tango so that they can chat with their friends that don't have Facetime (all Android and PC users). Again if this was an issue for a lot of people then Android wouldn't have taken over the market so quickly.<br><br>5. The app availability thing is quickly becoming a non-issue. WP has over 60,000 apps and is now adding 12,000 apps a month to the marketplace. Most of the top apps are already available for the platform.<br><br>Like I said if these were real issues for most consumers then Android would not have beaten iPhone so easily. All of these examples could have been used against someone buying an Android phone. Most consumers do not even own a Smartphone yet.
      cool8man
      • Ahhh but

        @cool8man
        With the Amazon a day free, I have indulged!
        Oh yes I have :D

        [i]chuckle[/i]
        rhonin
      • @cool8man I agree with the basic substance of your point but...

        C'mon, to say Android has in any way "beaten" iPhone is just asinine. The iPhone business -- which is Apple's alone -- is orders of magnitude more profitable than the Android business.

        In fact, the Android business, in aggregate, may [i]not even be profitable[/i].
        x I'm tc
      • Android probably isn't profitable

        @cool8man ... I think it's shaping up that smartphones are either going to be loss-leaders for the companies that make them, or they're going to be Apple which makes money on the hardware markup and the Apps/iTunes store.

        Microsoft's business philosophy, which has worked exactly once, is that you make the OS and all the hardware makers compete using your OS.

        Android appears to have filled that niche already, and the price is ... free.

        I am the 98.5%. (Sorry couldn't resist)
        HollywoodDog
      • RE: Nokia Lumia 900 to debut for $99 on AT&T: Report

        @jdakula<br><br>Perhaps you haven't heard about a little company out of Korea called Samsung. Making loads of cash off Android. Sony bought out Ericcson so they could make Android phones the way they want. Not the kind of move you make if Android "may not even be profitable".
        tallbruva
    • RE: Nokia Lumia 900 to debut for $99 on AT&T: Report

      @toddybottom_z
      1. All of my music is in iTunes. This phone works with iTunes, right? If it is DRM free you can load it to zune. If your songs are DRM protected then it will only work on the DRM device that it syncs to. You would need to convert it to MP3 or one of the other playable formats (NO DRM format) and then sync it with your windows phone. But hey you bought the song right so you should have no problems doing that. Any song you buy on zune comes down as MP3 and I always choose lossless

      2. I have spent hundreds of dollars on iPhone apps. This phone will run them, right? You would abandon the apps. This is the major problem with all app stores. Your never free to choose. Once you pay you have to weigh the cost of moving off the ecosystem. You would have an equal problem running MS apps on apple or android apps you bought on apple. Last I checked apple/google did not buy the apps back you already bought on another system. Besides you can still use them on your iPhone even with it not connected to a cell tower. Your iPhone will basically turn into an ipod touch.

      3. I have a couple docks for playing music. This phone will plug into them, right? There is a iphone dock converter that you can use any idevice doc and connect it to any smart phone. Actually this is one thing apple does really really well. Every ipod clone (ipod/ipod touch/iphone/ipad) has the same doc connector. The smartphone market if they agreed to a universal output. Eg USB on top with 3.5mm head set it would be easy to make a universal doc for the billions of non apple products. Till then use the doc converter :)

      4. I really like FaceTime and iChat. This phone will let me communicate with my iPhone friends who use FaceTime and iChat, right? Your never going to be able to use apple proprietary software on other platforms. However Tango is a fantastic VOIP and it is available for free on WP/Android/App store. It also uses 3g to communicate so no need to get on wifi hot spot. Which means it is probably better than facetime where FT uses wifi only (I believe might be US only) and can only talk apple to apple. Tango uses 3g and talks to everyone. Whatsapp is also the same way I would say better than ichat however they charge $2 per year for a subscription 1st year free but your paying 2 grand for your iphone so whats $2. On wp your logged into facebook chat all the time. So you can chat with anyone on facebook using the chat software. That opens it up to not only smartphone market but also PC market and even TVs. Last time I checked I could not chat with someone on a samsung TV/Android tablet/Windows 7 PC/smart phone all at the same time with iChat

      5. I see quite a few websites and organizations that advertise that they have an iPhone app. Even though they don't mention WP7, they probably also have a WP7 app, right? Some do some don???t. The reality is your buying into a platform with Probably 35 million users total VS the 200 ??? 300+ million on the other platforms so not everything is going to be there but it is coming. With WP you know what your buying and your buying windows phone for what it has now and what it will have in the future. It really is a different look and feel to the grid lock iPhone reliant on apps to do everything and when your on windows phone you may find you did not need that many apps anyway. There will be a push away from apps to mobile HTML5 sites some have already started and I prefer these sites to the app. The only thing lacking in HTML5 is the DRM and games. But I prefer amazons mobile site to their app any day that is one example. So if you love to stream pirated movies over the web. You may want to stick with apple they really have embraced the pirated movie scene better than anyone out there. I have a 2gb limit so I don???t care to stream pirated movies. Same goes with xfinity from comcast no need to stream movies. However if you want to program your dvr from your phone with comcast. They have no HTML5 mobile site and no app in WP. This is not WP fault but comcast for sucking and not doing a HTML5 site.

      Apple has done a great job of ???there???s an app for that??? so everything you think about is I need an App. The problem is in 2007 when the app store was kicking up that was needed. In 2012 with HTML5 you really no longer need an App. As long as companies start converting their sites to HTML5. However breaking that mindset is going to be the challenge

      Check out
      http://www.gottabemobile.com/2011/12/14/telenavs-html5-gps-solution-breaks-free-of-app-store-shackles/

      Your never free to choose until you break free from all app stores.
      BubbaFet