Wednesday, May 12, 2010
Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone News" @ 02:12 PM
"Microsoft's new Kin phones are not truly smartphones, but Verizon Wireless is charging users a minimum monthly $70 service fee anyway -- $30 alone for data -- over a two-year contract. Microsoft and Verizon representatives defended the fee on Tuesday, partly because of the Kins' automatic cloud-based backup of video, pictures and other data."
I've been critical of the reality distortion field that accompanies Steve Jobs every time he presents, so I can't be any less critical when I see Microsoft and Verizon doing the same thing. Both Microsoft and Verizon are standing arm in arm and together defending the pricing plan they've come up with for Kin. Ultimately, technology pundits such as myself saying the pricing plans are too expensive only count for so much - which isn't much - and what really mattes is what the market says.
In a few months we'll be able to see how popular the Kin is - or isn't - and make some conclusions from that. I maintain that the sweet spot would have been somewhere in the $40 to $50 pricing plans for both voice and data, and even lower if it's part of a family plan, not the $70+ realm that Verizon has chosen. Price matters - it always has, and it always will. Time and time again, consumers will accept "good enough" technologies if they intersect with a price point that makes sense; netbooks are a good example of this principal in action. The technologies in Kin are interesting, but not unique, and only someone who doesn't know any better is going to pay $70 per month for a Kin voice and data plan. Microsoft blew a prime opportunity to capture an important slice of the market...