Evidence is mounting that Verizon may be pushing Windows phones over iPhones to customers not sure on which smartphone handset to purchase. Whether these are isolated incidents at a few stores, or a nationwide push by Microsoft to force their way into the smartphone war is not yet clear.
Microsoft attempting to inject themselves into markets they completely missed or believe is critical to the company is nothing new for the Redmond giant. The likely game this go around is to spiff local Verizon representatives with per-handset bonus cash or via weekly/monthly sales totals.
One T-GAAP-er just told us they went seeking a smartphone and were leaning towards an iPhone. The Verizon representatives highly suggested she should get a Windows phone instead. When the customer (she) decided upon an iPhone and wanted to know the difference between the iPhone 4 and 4S, the sales person became rude, roller her eyes, and simply went through the motions to sell the phone. Later, a Verizon salesman told the customer she should trade the iPhone 4S back in for an iPhone 4 if she really wanted battery life. Verizon also told her that the previous BlackBerry she owned would perform much better in battery life, not iPhones.
When the customer asked how to get her iPhone 4S setup with calendar and contacts, Verizon said they would wait on that, as she would likely bring her iPhone 4S back for an iPhone 4 (or another smartphone due to battery life), and they would then help her.
This may simply be a case of a bad day, at a bad store, but as we see a pattern emerge we’ll bring an update to what Verizon’s new game appears to be with Microsoft – at this point, it appears to be desperate.