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Nokia may pay $25m to make Lumia 900 'official' AT&T phone

updated 01:55 pm EDT, Fri March 23, 2012

ATT staff may have option of Lumia 900 for free

Nokia may try to overcome stigmas about buying Windows Phone by seeding AT&T's retail staff with free phones. Apparent leaks to WPCentral have Nokia paying as much as $25 million to let staff take free Lumia 900 phones in a Company Use program. Workers wouldn't be forced to use the Lumia, but they would have to trade in whatever they have.

Expectations were supposedly that over 80 percent of staff in a given store would use the phone as part of the program.

AT&T was already believed to be getting $100 million-plus in promotion from Nokia and could treat the Lumia 900 as its centerpiece phone for the near future. Despite having a 4.3-inch screen and LTE, it could cost just $100 on a contract for its rumored April 9 launch, making it one of the most affordable 4G phones in the US.

The combination of strategies, if made real, would serve mutual interests. Nokia and Microsoft alike are hoping to overcome a perceived bias where store staff recommend only Android or iPhone hardware, creating an ironic reversal where Microsoft now faces the same retail discrimination that Apple once did in the 1990s. AT&T, meanwhile, is still trying to reduce its dependency on the iPhone and hasn't had much success putting Android in that role.



By Electronista Staff
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Comments

  1. Paul Huang

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: Sep 1999

    +6

    Store employees fleeing AT&T

    To Verizon and Sprint!

  1. Paul Huang

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: Sep 1999

    +3

    Better than a massive layoff

    What an idea.

  1. freddymac

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jul 2010

    +11

    Yea right

    "Workers wouldn't be forced to use the Lumia, but they would have to trade in whatever they have."
    Good luck with that............. Poor M$. How does it feel to live in a world with REAL competition? No amount of money is going to help you now that consumers have a choice.

  1. SwissMac

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2006

    +4

    No cash though

    Presumably it would be no more than a supply of free phones with free Microsoft software to try to push the iPhone out of the market.

  1. Paul Huang

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: Sep 1999

    +4

    Maybe providing two years of...

    free-and-clear ownership (free texting and free international calling, etc), would Microsoft be able to gain some foothold with the employees. So...the employees are not forced to use the phone, so that means there will be thousands of them floating around on eBay.

  1. Paul Huang

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: Sep 1999

    +2

    Maybe the program is limited to...

    trade in of iPhones.

  1. facebook_Terrin

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Mar 2012

    +1

    Nokia my second choice

    Seriously, I would buy the Nokia Lumia over any Android phone I have every played with. First, I dislike the Android interface. It feels like a poor copy of the iPhone interface. The current version of the Window Phone OS is original (e.g. not an iPhone copycat) and although it still needs to catch up on some functionality it is well designed.

    Second, I haven't used an Android phone yet that has a decent build quality. HTC, Samsung, and especially Motorola make cheap feeling phones. Nobody can honestly hold an iPhone in his or her hand along with most of the phones made by these companies and say the build quality comes close. I still have almost a four year iPhone going strong in my family. I have used phones by just about every phone company. Most especially those made by Motorola would never make it the term of the contract.

    Next to Apple, Nokia makes the most durable and well thought out phones. Further Nokia is not merely copying what Apple has done (e.g like Samsung loves to do). Go into a T-Mobile store and play with these phones. T-Mobile is stocked with Android phones. Since T-Mobile doesn't carry the iPhone, the Nokia phone is the best phone in the place.

  1. facebook_Tanya

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Mar 2012

    +1

    I'd take the deal and flip it

    If I had to trade in 'my' phone, I'd switch to some cheap phone first, then after I got this one, I'd flip it on ebay. Then I'd go back to using my regular phone, cash in pocket.

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