Microsoft: 1.5 Million Windows Phone 7 Devices Sold By Manufacturers

Well, at least Microsoft has spoken. They haven't said an awful lot that we didn't already expect, but it's something. Despite the fact that Windows Phone 7 went on sale to consumers weeks ago, Microsoft has yet to come forward with any near-term sales figures. Contrary to that, they were quick to point out 2.5 million Kinect sales in just 25 days, so there's definitely a double standard of sorts going on.

Analysts were wondering what the holdup was, and just before Christmas, Microsoft has come forward to silence some of that talk. Achim Berg, Microsoft’s vice president of business and marketing for Windows Phones, has just stated that "phone manufacturers sold over 1.5 million phones in the first six weeks," which sounds great at first. But what this really means is that 1.5 million phones were sold to stores and carriers, not necessarily into the hands of general consumers. In other words, at least some of that 1.5 million is still sitting in shipping pallets, on store shelves and elsewhere in the sales channel. It's definitely harder to judge the success of a product when you have no idea how many are sitting in a backroom and how many are being used by customers.

Of course, the WP7 app store is growing at a faster rate than Android's app store when it launched, so there's definitely positive news to go around. But it will still be a few quarters in our mind before we can tell if WP7 really has traction in a world already dominated by iOS, Android and BlackBerry.

Windows Phone 7 Sales Off to a Promising Start, First Step in a New Era of Mobile
Achim Berg, Microsoft’s vice president of business and marketing for Windows Phones, discusses the momentum, strengths and challenges of the company’s newly launched Windows Phone 7.

REDMOND, Wash. – Dec. 21, 2010 – There is one phrase that Achim Berg uses repeatedly to describe the new Windows Phone 7.

“It’s a different kind of phone, fast and easy,” says Berg, vice president of business and marketing for Windows Phones. It’s a sentence he relates with enthusiasm daily, whether he’s giving a Windows Phone 7 demonstration to a large crowd, or showing off his phone to someone he’s just met.
Achim Berg, corporate vice president, Mobile Communications Business and Marketing Group.
Achim Berg, corporate vice president, Mobile Communications Business and Marketing Group.
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Berg arrived in his role this past summer and has spent time getting to know the team, his partners and the opportunities Microsoft has to re-establish itself in mobile.  He made the move just as Microsoft was rolling out Windows Phone 7, which launched in Europe and the Asia Pacific region on October 21 and in the United States and Canada on November 8.

Prior to coming to Redmond, Berg was general manager of Microsoft Germany and area vice president of Microsoft International. Before working at Microsoft, he was a member on the board of directors of Deutsche Telekom T-Com, Europe's largest telecommunications company, where he was responsible for marketing and sales of the company's fixed line business.

The Microsoft News Center recently spoke with Berg on how Windows Phone 7 is doing in its first two months since launching worldwide.

News Center: You’ve just launched Windows Phone, how is it going?

Berg: We believe that to succeed in mobile you need, first of all, a great product, and we think we have that. What we’re hearing from our customers is that they’re thinking the same way. Additionally, early customer survey data on the overall software experience is very positive and the willingness to recommend our phone is very high. That’s really good for us.

What we see as well is that people like the new design and the different approach that we’ve taken. On the developer side, our tools are really good and leverage the skills they already have. Developers are validating that the tools make it easy to make great apps and games quickly – we have more than 4,000 apps in our marketplace. With more pouring in daily, this is an enviable pace for any new platform.

And just as we did something different with the phone, we did similarly with advertising. Our campaign, with the “Really?” ads, is completely different advertising, and it’s very gratifying to see the positive response we’ve received. Our campaign has been well-accepted and shows that our product has been correctly targeted.

News Center: Windows Phone 7 has been in market for almost two months now worldwide, how are sales going?

Berg: Sales are ramping well as our reputation is growing for offering users a unique experience and are in line with our expectations – especially when compared to other new platform introductions. With a new platform you have to look at a couple of things, first of all customer satisfaction. As I mentioned before, we’ve seen great response on the complete mobile phone experience.
Learn more about Windows Phone 7

Another is phone manufacturer sales – phones being bought and stocked by mobile operators and retailers on their way to customers. We are pleased that phone manufacturers sold over 1.5 million phones in the first six weeks, which helps build customer momentum and retail presence.

We know we have tough competition, and this is a completely new product. We’re in the race – it’s not a sprint but we are certainly gaining momentum and we’re in it for the long run.

News Center: Do these sales figures meet your expectations?

Berg: Yes, and I think our expectations are realistic for a new platform. We started fresh with Windows Phone 7, and it’s a different kind of phone. Measuring for success is more long term than short term. We launched with many of the top mobile operators in the world, and even more in the coming year in 2011. We have 18,000 developers who are developing for our marketplace. It’s just getting better and better.

News Center: How does this stack up against the competition?

Berg: It’s a bit of apples and oranges comparison; our numbers are similar to the performance of other first generation mobile platforms. We introduced a new platform with Windows Phone 7, and when you do that it takes time to educate partners and consumers on what you’re delivering, and drive awareness and interest in your new offering.  We’re comfortable with where we are, and we are here for the long run; Windows Phone 7 is just the beginning.  Our opportunity is to make sure people get to play with a Windows Phone. Once they do, they love it. This is very important for us.

News Center: The smartphone industry is so competitive, how will you catch up?

Berg: We all know that the competition is extreme in this industry, and we have to compete on multiple fronts. We have to deliver a great product that people want to use. We have a different point of view than just delivering apps, and we have received great customer feedback on our approach. We are working on updates that will take us to the next level. Plus, we have great support from the ecosystem including developers, operators and device manufacturers, which will add to momentum we are already seeing.

From this perspective, we’re in a good place. We are on a path to begin releasing the first of several updates in the next couple of months, and several more mobile operators around the world will introduce Windows Phone 7 on their network in 2011 and we will have a broader portfolio of devices from phone manufacturers at different price points delivering on our commitment of providing customers choice. We believe doing these things right will lead to continued success.
Via:  Microsoft
3vi1 3 years ago

So Android's outselling them by more than 10:1 (300k Android phones per day, at last count), and Microsoft thinks they're "in a good place".

I predict we'll see a dramatic increase in frivolous patent lawsuits against Android manufacturers, as Ballmer goes chair-crazy. Microsoft will keep pouring their OS/Office money into this, but Win Pho 7 will ultimately remain a flop. They'll have to do something different when they introduce Win Pho 8 - like buying a cell carrier.

In retrospect, this makes the funeral parade they threw for Android and iPhone pretty funny.

MMcCutcheon 3 years ago

i'm most likely sticking with windows phones...the family plan we are on..if we moved it up, would cost us an extra $150 a month for all data, no thx. atleast with windows phones i can use edge data (yes its not that fast, but its a damn phone). i don't mind waiting 10 seconds for something to load or not gettin the best picture quality off youtube, my phone kills time when i'm a passenger or got everything done at work.

acarzt 3 years ago

I doubt Android has been selling 300k phones per day since launch tho lol

This is a pretty good start for MS considering there are only like 3-5 WP7 phones.

I love mine :-)

3vi1 3 years ago

>> This is a pretty good start for MS considering there are only like 3-5 WP7 phones

This is a pretty bad start for MS considering they've been running a buy one, get one free program.

rapid1 3 years ago

I find this confusing really. I heard first that M$ said they sold the same number of devices to OEMS (wireless distibutors) specifically. However; as brought up in that article, and therefore stated within it as well, that they were not sold directly to consumers. It was also mentioned in that article as a question as to how many had been sold to end user's? Now this states that the same exact number was sold to end users! The one major strength I think M$ already holds here is the business market. Almost every business in the country uses M$ products be they a Windows derivative, a server derivative, and almost always a M$ Office derivative as well. The big thing here I think is Office though.

Blackberry devices cam to be, and stand where they currently do for one reason which is business users, especially those whose employer provides them with a communication unit. While some have gone to IOS, and some to Android, and some have up until now remained with BB I do not know if I see this lasting anymore. Some stalwarts will stick with BB, but this is what held W$ phone back to a greater degree I believe. I am not saying I think it is better here. I am trying to think as a business owner, and this makes sense to me.

I find this especially true in the current market where everything is moving to 24/7 availability/connectedness. This makes a great platform from that point of view as it is intertwined or seemingly so.I know they are seen as the big fish in a little pond in many cases. Business especially big business usually see's this as a positive rather than a negative for these very reasons.

So I think Winphones are in a very good place due to these things. Mind you I am not saying I really like this as it will just make M$ even more of a definer, and I do not think that is really a good thing entirely.

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