AT&T spending more on Microsoft’s Nokia Lumia 900 launch than it did on iPhone

“Get ready for another big smartphone campaign. For AT&T, it’ll be even bigger than the one for iPhone,” Kunur Patel reports for Advertising Age.

“In the coming months, AT&T will kick in as much as $150 million to help launch Nokia’s Windows Phone Lumia 900, Ad Age has learned, topping its outlay for the ubiquitous Apple device,” Patel reports. “Big backing was a no-brainer for Nokia and Microsoft, players that have been pummeled in the extremely competitive, extremely lucrative smartphone market and are teaming up to compete with Apple, Samsung and Google. Less obvious is that the device may be equally crucial for AT&T, the phone’s sole carrier.”

Patel reports, “Blame it on iPhone. Since AT&T had to start sharing the Apple product with Verizon early last year, its biggest rival has been adding smartphone subscribers faster. That’s trouble, because carriers are looking to smartphone owners’ profitable data plans to propel growth as other revenue streams dry up. This February, about a year after iPhone became available on Verizon, its smartphone subscribers had increased 81%, to 32.2 million. Though AT&T’s smartphone pool is still larger, it grew only 37% in the period, to 33.8 million. Now that Verizon is nipping at its heels, AT&T needs another dog in the smartphone fight.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Oh, they got a dog alright.

Related articles:
If an iPhone wannabe lands on Easter, does it make a splash? – April 9, 2012
Mossberg reviews Microsoft’s Nokia Lumia 900, can’t recommend it over superior iPhone 4S – April 5, 2012
How long until it’s time to write the obituary for Windows Phone? – April 4, 2012
Microsoft’s Nokia Lumia 900 Windows Phone racks up bad reviews – April 4, 2012
Beleaguered Nokia desperately uses non-existent ‘iPhone death grip’ in new ad for anemic-selling Windows Phone – April 2, 2012
Nokia paying AT&T up to $25 million for exclusive employee use of Lumia 900 Windows Phone – March 23, 2012
Brutal truth about Lumia: Windows Phone strategy doomed for beleaguered Nokia – March 21, 2012


  1. Never confuse activity for accomplishment. Just b/c you spend money doesn’t mean you’re doing something meaningful besides spending money to make it look like you’re doing something meaningful.

      1. If so they are doing it using Googles money since they collect a fee for almost every Android device sold. So if they collect $400 million off Android annually and use $150 million one time to market their own product who’s really the loser in that equation?

        1. Microsoft, Nokia & AT&T are all about to crap in a box and spend 150Million bucks to convince everyone it’s fudge. At first bite no one will be fooled. This phone might have worked 8 years ago. People are far too educated to buy this fudge because they know it’s the same old crap with new sprinkles. Good luck with that. Here is to hoping that enough jackasses still believe you are who you say who you are or pretend to be. Posers

        2. … Google care if a phone using a Windows Mobile OS is sold by ATT? Did I miss where MSFT started including Android tech into their Mobile OS?
          Or is this a “reverse psychology” sort of thing where they are willing to lead potential buyers from their own shaky platform to where the pickings are demonstrably slimmer, expecting them to come swarming back, apologetic as all get out?

    1. Maybe they could improve the quality of their service to compete. If they spent the money on the simple updates to their system that Sprint suggested that would increase the quality of… What am I THINKING???

      That will never happen.

    2. True. However, money spent to kill off Fragmandroid is money well spent.

      They won’t touch apple, but this will be fun to watch. MS and Google making fisticuffs at each other XD

      Grab your iPhones and Popcorn, everyone!

  2. I seem to recall a (somewhat) “big” campaign for the Kin. 🙂

    AT&T doesn’t have to market the iPhone at all, because Apple does all the work.

    1. Yes. That, and AT&T is losing subscribers because they have crappy service!!

      I’m sick of carrier bull***t. I really can’t wait until Apple starts a US wireless network. The Liberation will begin! 😀

  3. Let’s see how this works out. But I’m expecting AT&T’s investments to barely move the needle in terms of growing NokiaSoft’s mind & market share. No amount of media & retail channel brainwashing will change the fact that Windows Phone suffers from serious AppLack™, among it’s many deficiencies. No iMessage. No FaceTime. And no Draw Something even!

  4. AT&T will spend more on ads for Lumia 900 than first four iPhone launches combined. However, some analysts say that AT&t didn’t even sell 100,000 Lumia 900s on launch weekend.

      1. didn’t. They are reporting very strong sales – even though the device was launched on a major holiday. Why be a hater. Should everybody be a sheep that stands on line for hours to buy a smartphone in a disturbing, cult-like fashion just because YOU do so?

        1. What major holiday was this you’re talking about? Stores were open everywhere in town. I spent time at Best Buy and Lowes. the tourists were out in force.

          As Naught above said: Must have missed something.

  5. Those stats comparing AT&T to Verizon are a bit misleading. Many, many Verizon customers were waiting and waiting to get a smartphone for Verizon to get the iPhone, or even switched from another carrier (not just AT&T) to get the iPhone.

    AT&T, Microsoft and Nokia can hire Nikki Minaj, spend lots of money on commercials, etc., but in the end the Lumina 900 (what happened to the other 899 Luminas?) are less capable, less enjoyable and suffer from AppLack. It will never, ever be a competitor for the iPhone.

    1. @troy – They, along with all the rest of us in this market, would regret having but Apple and it’s knock-off Android to choose from as a choice for touchscreen, mobile devices. That would be the regret. Having an option in the market for a smartphone that performs differently from Ios and Android is a plus for EVERYONE involved, including Apple and Android that will have to fortify their own offerings and add value for their customers to keep them.

      1. So the answer is to support Microsoft, a company that makes Google look like the Easter Bunny by comparison?

        Well, it’s nice that you’re willing to blindly support a third platform like a lemming just because it isn’t iOS or Android, regardless of that platform’s actual quality and who makes it. But I don’t think you should expect anybody here to turn off their brains and follow suit.

  6. Such short-mindedness – Apple doesn’t even have the leading smartphone platform – why should anybody think MS is targeting them… They aren’t, anymore than they were targeting Nintendo in the console market, in smartphones Android is the player MS is looking to topple. And it’s good that carrier execs are smarter than their customers for the most part, because they are looking at the breath and scope of Nokia and MS, they are looking at customer satifaction ratings that rival and in many cases exceed that of the Iphone, they are looking at impressive hardware coupled with an exceptionally optimized, forward looking, expandable OS that will be tied into an expansive unified ecosystem and they see that for them that means higher retention rates and renewal rates = lower cost and higher profits, which many of you seem incapable of understanding. Further one would have to be a fool not to realize Nokia can best Apple in hardware and MS can best them in Software and we see examples of this already in the newborn smartphone platform which from my experience with it makes Ios seem rather like the Windows of old, since with the introduction of Windows 8 even Windows doesn’t look as much like Windows and Ios does. What Android has over MS is apps, but that becomes literally less of a defence for MS competitors each and every passing day. It is foolish to equate lack of success with failure as though they are synonomous. And the cherry on top for MS is that Android licensing payment largely funds the developement of a superior competitive product.

    1. You really take this too seriously,. To have put that much effort in to a post that I stopped reading half way through.

      You realize this is MDN and you are not an analyst for Forbes.

      1. But you’re here, and you’re a nobody just as surely as I am and took the time to respond to something you claim not to have read. And I bet you form uniformed opinions like that all the time by the looks of it.

    2. “Apple doesn’t even have the leading smartphone platform ”

      Yes they do. No other smartphone platform has even approached it in terms profits or marketshare. And before you shout “Android!!”, remember that Android isn’t a platform but an immense, fractured grab-bag of them.

      “why should anybody think MS is targeting them…”

      Yeah. I can’t believe how people took that funeral for the iPhone that Microsoft held so out of context.

      “And it’s good that carrier execs are smarter than their customers for the most part”

      Exactly, I mean, they took one look at the failed Windows Phone platform and thought to themselves, “Hot damn! We gotta get behind this!”

      “Further one would have to be a fool not to realize Nokia can best Apple in hardware and MS can best them in Software”

      Really? So why haven’t they done this yet? Are Nokia and Microsoft just pretending to suck to spare poor little old Apple’s feeling?

    3. -wuhahaha! You lost me at ‘impressive hardware coupled with an exceptionally optimized, forward looking, expandable OS’ so yes, man, so much work writing this and almost no one reads on.
      How old are you, 20, 21 pe something? What did

      1. – How old are you, 20, 21 or something? What did someone pay you to write that rant… rant, rant rant…?
        can’t be much, admit it. I only commented this cos I maybe used to be like you when I was 21, full of illusions, whereas, today, I am full of illusions that someone may actually read my comments here. I admit I am dumb too. It’s the stuff we’re made of, huh? We can’t let go… Bwahahaha.
        All the best for your future life and may the force be with you.
        I oughtn’t have actually commented this.
        Arrrrgh. 🙂
        Someone tell me to stop.
        And go Apple go and…


        The End

    4. … trying to figure out what you mis-typed that got mis-auto-corrected to “los”. Or maybe you are a native Spanish speaker? No. Then I figured it out – you meant iOS. A bit confusing when you don’t use standard formatting and the default font is one of these sans-serif types where the “I” and the “l” are identical.
      Yes, I guess it’s quite possible that Nokia could best Apple in the hardware design area. And it is also possible that MSFT could best Apple in the software department. Although, you’d have to do both to beat Apple and MSFT hasn’t had that sort of exceptional software this millennium. (OK, in over a decade, but both are “true” at the moment) And Nokia hasn’t surpassed Apple’s design work since the original iPhone was introduced. So … SURE, it is possible. I believe both, individually or together, are unlikely in the extreme.

  7. I have to agree that Nokia and Microsoft are most likely targeting most low- and mid-range Android smartphones since the Lumia 900 is in their price range. They’re also basically fighting for the title of who has the most smartphone hardware to put their respective OSes on. That is going to be such a highly competitive fight that even the winner isn’t likely to make much in the way of profits. It’s looks to be more like a market share thing with both Android and WP7 racing to the bottom.

    Fortunately, Microsoft has plenty of money to throw away on establishing Nokia as a prime partner of Windows Phones. It certainly does seem practical for Microsoft to pursue their mobile dream of making a huge comeback. I doubt if it will harm Apple at all because there’s still only one iPhone running iOS and as long as Apple’s ecosystem is intact and profitable, iPhone hardware sales will continue to grow.

    1. Top or bottom matters little – For MS all that matters is moving licenses for the software it develops – which cost the same regardless of what the OEMs do with it, that’s wholly different from Apple that needs to sale high-end products because it’s an in-house, luxury brand. For Apple it’s less of a volume game.

      Unlike Google, which got where it is by giving a product away and taking indirect profits mostly in the form of ad revenue, if MS ever has 40+ percent of the smartphone market it will generate billions of dollars in direct revenue for the company and probably it’s partners as well.

      1. Dood, the Luna 900 flopped big time in Europe. WTF do you think throwing $150 million in ad money at it in North America will change.

        Americans don’t buy high end Nokia phones.

  8. Of course AT&T is spending more on this launch, Jobs wouldn’t allow them to create iPhone advertising, because Apple needs to control the look and feel of the ads.

    This is going to be make-or-break for microsoft and Nokia both, since have each been steadily losing relevance. Frankly, the only real hope this effort has is in the courtroom, where Androids may either be stripped of features or have to pay so much in licensing it will require them to double the price of their crappy phones.

    1. Anybody, and just about everybody, that has used a Lumia device (even an entry level device) running WP 7.5 concedes that it’s a good product that competes in almost every measure with Android and Ios.

      To assert that their only hope is in court doesn’t ring true, Side by side the phone stands on par with its competitors and you don’t gain customers in court – customers will need to choose a Lumia device over other offerings in the market. That would be the case even if Android never existed when Lumia hit the market.

      1. Bullshit!
        Every reviewer who wasn’t bought and paid for said it doesn’t stand up to Android phones. It doesn’t stand a chance with iPhones.

        Let’s face it, if the Luna 900 was any good, they wouldn’t have to pay AT&T to sell them. They could sell them through all the US carriers.

      2. The court of public opinion will judge the Lumina. It hasn’t been out long enough for reviews or for customer comments. What colour are you going to purchase?

  9. You can BET that Nokia/Microsoft gave AT&T a huge wholesale price incentive to spend Spend SPEND on a Lumia sales campaign. So, i look at this as another opportunity for Microsoft to blow their dough in the right direction: Down the drain.

  10. Here is an idea AT&T want to increase your customer base? Quit throttling are data while you take our hard earn money to push third rare products instead of building out your network I swear if I were chairman of that company I would have every smartphone customer in the land begging to sign up there would be a year waiting list to even get on my AT&T !! You know how ??? By treating customers with respect not by being a low down dirty thief in the night as you are you lowlife blood suckers !!!!

    Makes me sick every time they get there stolen money and cut my service to nothing and still charge the overages !! ERRRRRR

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