You know who stands the most to gain with a high-profile mobile platform launch? How about the guy that's losing out on its biggest exclusivity deal of all time. Buy a Windows Phone 7 phone from AT&T when it goes on sale for the holiday season, and get $30 worth of content from the mobile provider.
It's just AT&T's way of saying "we're desperate. We don't have iPhone exclusivity anymore."
Seriously, AT&T is going to have to face the music in a big way the moment another carrier begins selling the iPhone. If you believe the rampant rumors, that will happen in January when Verizon will have its own iPhone to peddle.
So Windows Phone 7, though it will be available across multiple carriers, is a chance for AT&T to strike a new chord. It wants consumers to look its way amidst the flurry of launch phones that'll be released.
Between the official Windows Phone 7 launch and the end of the year, anyone who buys an AT&T phone with Microsoft's new operating system will get:
- Downloadable puzzle game "ilomilo"
- 10 Zune music downloads
- One free month of service to Zune, allowing for unlimited music and video streaming
Even though it sounds like a good offer, AT&T will try to nickel-and-dime you from it. You actually need to put in your credit card info when you redeem the free content, and unless you cancel you'll start being charged $10 a month for Zune service after the first month.
That's not exactly the best way to lure in consumers, AT&T. But then again, you do need all the money you can get. The writing is so on the wall for that mobile provider it's not even funny.