Windows Phone 7 opportunity?
Recently (well, upon launch of the WP7), I switched from an iPhone to a Windows Phone 7. My wife, who was using a basic cellphone, was excited for the opportunity to move to a smartphone, so I gave her my old iPhone. She simply wanted a way to carry her calendar with her and do text messaging. She did not want all the features of a smartphone…but NO. AT&T demands that if you carry a smartphone, you MUST pay them a $15 a month privledge tax (okay, they call it a basic data plan, but it is a tax to use a smartphone). My wife really liked having her calendar with her, and was perfectly happy using our home WiFi to update the calendar…and to this day, does not really use the dataplan.
So my thought here is that Microsoft, and possibly Nokia have an opportunity here. Especially in light of the Zune HD being retired, to create a new category of devices. iPhone has their iPod touch…but no phone capabilities (well, without Skype…a Microsoft company now). So why not work out some deal with the cellular carriers to create a smartphone-lite class. Offer a smartphone without a 3G/LTE/etc. data service. We simply want a cellphone to make calls, text, and connect to WiFi networks. No dataplans!!!!!!
I think Microsoft and Nokia have the clout here to pull this off. I know my daughter, who has a basic texting phone and a Zune player with Zune pass, would be in line on day 1. She could make calls, text her friends, and when at home, could connect to the Internet and download music (and possibly use other services like Facebook, IE, etc.). If Nokia and Microsoft are looking to increase their marketshare, why not target all those individuals who would love a music and/or gaming device that can call and do texting?
What does everyone think? Do you have someone you know that would get a smartphone without a dataplan?