According to AT&T employee Jeffery Brown, AT&T and Nokia are kicking Nokia Lumia 900 marketing into high gear over the next two months. AT&T will also be requiring AT&T reps to sell at least one Nokia Lumia 900 by the end of April.
The initiative may be reflecting the idea that AT&T â€œis sick of taking orders from Appleâ€ and are looking for a new third player to play off against Apple and Google.
Vision2Mobile reports on a comment by Katie Lewis, Yankee Group associate analyst.
"Mobile operators are sick of taking orders from Apple but that’s not the only reason carriers like AT&T and Verizon are backing Windows Phone," she wrote.
"The success of the third mobile ecosystem would put control over the U.S. smartphone market back into the hands of mobile operators â€“ backing Windows Phone is AT&T And Verizon’s chosen method of self-preservation," she continued.
Apple demands huge operator subsidies for their smartphones, in the order of $400 or more, double the cost of a comparable Android or Windows Phone. They also cut out the carriers from any additional revenue stream from post-market devices. The cost of adding an iPhone subscriber can also be up to 40% higher than other phones.
In a research note earlier this month analysts with BTIG Research said they anticipate that phone carriers will slow the pace of phone upgrades this year. Such upgrades have significantly pressured margins at AT&T and other carriers, financial analysts have said.
"We expect wireless operators to try even harder to promote alternatives to Apple. As Androidâ€™s initial popularity continues to fade because of its uneven and fragmented performance and BlackBerry falls further into oblivion, there is renewed hope that Microsoft and Nokia will be able to produce a viable alternative to Apple," wrote Walter Piecyk, BTIG Research analyst, in research note April 9. "These two giant companies and former industry leaders will clearly be putting significant resources behind any new product launched. We expect wireless operators to join in that investment as they increasingly fear Appleâ€™s stranglehold on their margins."
Hopefully Windows Phone has enough of a consumer appeal to allow buyers to respond to the additional marketing efforts. Given the response to the Nokia Lumia 900 so far, this does seem quite likely however.