Microsoft claimed they were giving each employee a Windows Phone handset and it looks like the Redmond company is making good on its promise. Maarten Sonneveld of Microsoft Netherlands tweeted that the Samsung Omnia 7 is on its way to the Netherland employees. A separate report from allaboutphone.nl also confirms that the Netherlands division has handed out Windows Phone handsets to all its employees. The Netherlands arm of the company has this to say about its internal handset promotion:
Microsoft Netherlands last week started with the internal deployment of Windows Phone 7. The vast majority of employees now use their new phone and the first experiences are very positive.
Of course, this is a Microsoft statement about a Windows Phone being distributed to Microsoft employees; one would expect nothing but positive comments. The promotion gives the nascent mobile platform a boost – it is good for public relations, it helps to get handsets into the wild, and helps to inflate the number of users on popular social networks. Just watch the number of registered WP7 Facebook users skyrocket once these free handsets have landed on the desk of every Microsoft employee worldwide, all 89,000 of them.
In the end, it is consumer sentiment and sales figures that will be used to gauge the success of this platform, not fancy promotions. Naysayers are already calling this new mobile platform a flop, but I think flop is too harsh of a word. Windows Phone is off to an expectedly slow, but steady start. In the upcoming year, the Redmond will continue to pump cash into the development and marketing of its mobile operating system. Let’s hope it pays off.