We know that a monster promotional budget is being brought to bear on behalf of the Lumia 900 (and by association Windows Phone, which has failed to catch on in the States). AT&T itself indicated that the Nokia 900 launch will exceed that of the original iPhone in terms of promotion. Reports that the budget reaches $200 million or more floated around, and yesterday’s report that AT&T was going to foot $150 million adverting budget was just the latest in a long line of similar rumors.
Now, sources speaking to The Verge are claiming that AT&T is not spending anywhere close to $150 million, that the real number is in line with “any high-profile device launch.” Who is right? With dueling anonymous sources it’s sort of difficult to say. This could simply be spin, trying to deflect away from AT&T’s investment in case of a failure, or it could be someone in the know trying to correct an erroneous report.
We tend to believe AT&T’s own words; when they say that this launch will be their biggest ever, we see no reason to not believe it. Whether that number is truly $150 million is another thing – would $137 million qualify as “nowhere near” in corporate boiler-plate? Of course it may be that while the launch itself is the largest in the network’s history, Microsoft and Nokia may be footing most of the bill. Perhaps AT&T really is only spending “average high-profile” device dollars, with the rest of the budget coming from the deep pockets of Microsoft and Nokia.
Given that Nokia is really spending Microsoft’s money, it may be that Microsoft is fronting most of the moola for this effort – certainly they are the ones with the most at stake.
sources: The Verge; AdAge