Verizon hasn’t been offering Microsoft mobile devices for quite sometime now. In fact, if you were looking for a Microsoft mobile device after May of 2011 you would pretty much have been out of luck as they pulled all Microsoft brands from their inventory at that time. While Windows Mobile has been offered through Verizon’s top competitor, AT&T, there has been a noticeable absence of Microsoft devices available or even usable on Verizon’s network. Finally though the two companies seem to have worked out a new agreement that will allow them to move forward with a new device – Nokia’s flagship Lumia line.
There is a huge Lumia product announcement set for September 5th to discuss Nokia’s Lumia brand and the future of Windows 8 phones and I’m sure there will be at least a brief mention of this at that point. I’m sure the timing on this is no coincidence that it is being announced before the next iteration of the iPhone and will hopefully get the notice that it deserves if all of the specs and early previews on the device prove to be true. This is a case that really works out for everyone involved in the deal as Microsoft and Nokia have to be desperate to regain so much lost market share from years of losing it as smart phones became the primary mobile device of the masses and Verizon needs the strength of another big player in the mobile market to prevent Apple and Google from raising their prices on the provider side.
With the the new line of Lumia phones being released with Windows 8 each of the three companies have a potential goldmine on their hands assuming it is marketed correctly. Windows 8 has an unheard set of features that allow devices running the OS to be tied in together in a way that is only attempted by Apple and is only partially acomplished by Google since Chrome OS is not a mainstream product. Microsoft has the consumer and business market share, but still when it comes to laptops and desktops this could be used to create a market share on mobile as long as devices can properly be tied into one another.
Nokia was once the champion of mobile phones but has lost its majority market share and with it consumer trust in their ability to provide a modern up to date phone. The Windows 8 partnership and the Lumia brand is a key role for the company’s future. Windows 8 is clearly a step away from Microsoft’s safe area and its innovations need to be well received in order to advance. It is clearly an operating system though that is designed to work with the strengths of mobile devices and the touch interface and the Lumia hardware has been built from the ground up to properly support it.
Will this new deal combined with its new flagship device finally allow Nokia to regain its lost marketshare and have Microsoft break into the mobile market as it has been hoping to do? Only time will tell.
Related Link: Bloomberg