Nokia’s 4.3 inch 4G LTE enabled Windows Phone for the American market, dubbed the Lumia 900, launched on AT&T on April 8th for $99 with a two year contract. Here we are, two months and one week later, and the price has now been halved to just $49. This isn’t a sale price, this is now the new official price. The obvious question here is why has AT&T decided to do this? Answering that is a bit tricky. We could say that sales of the Lumia 900 weren’t meeting expectations and AT&T needs to clear out excess inventory, but that would be speculation since we don’t have any actual sales data. We could also say that AT&T tends to make devices cheaper over time, but then again you could point to a highly successful device and say that it hasn’t had a price change for well over half a year.
Here’s what we do know: On June 20th, a little over three weeks ago, Microsoft announced Windows Phone 8. During that announcement they finally confirmed what many technology publications have been reporting since the beginning of this year, that today’s Windows Phones will not get upgraded to Windows Phone 8. Instead, owners of existing devices would get a release of the OS called Windows Phone 7.8, which … let’s be honest here, it’s just Windows Phone 7.5, but with a new theme. The media covered the deprecation of the “old version” of Windows Phone with such hostility that it wouldn’t surprise us to hear that sales of devices like the Lumia 900 in America and the Lumia 800 in Europe all but shriveled up.
Just last week we covered a rumor that was published in Seeking Alpha; according to an anonymous Nokia employee based in Asia, the company is basically just sitting on their hands, doing nothing, waiting until Windows Phone 8. Sales are so low that the factories have practically shut down.
We’ll find out what the situation is on the 19th when Nokia publishes financial results.