verizon

Finally coming this fall?

Bloomberg is going on record tonight claiming that Verizon will launch a new Windows Phone 8 device this year from Nokia. The online news site generally has a strict policy on reporting these types of stories, lending a lot of credence to its trust-worthiness (81% on Tracour)—that and of course it’s basically what we’re expecting to hear.

News that Verizon will be launching a Nokia Windows Phone is not very shocking—in fact, it may have been more news if they weren’t at this point. Verizon was critical of Windows Phone for not having LTE early on and then evidently they caught wind of the Windows Phone 7 phase-out with new, more powerful ‘Apollo’ devices.

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Just as we reported two days ago, Verizon has opened the flood gates for the Windows Phone Tango update. Customers who own the HTC Trophy will be able to update their device(s) once the notification of updateable-goodness has appeared on-screen or through Zune. We've already received word from a number of Windows Phone Central readers confirming the update is indeed rolling out.

To recap what's included:-

  • WiFi Hotspot / Internet sharing now available
  • Enhanced multimedia messaging capabilities (multiple photos, videos, ringtones)

The Tango update will push Windows Phone owners to 8773 and will set the path for Windows Phone 7.8. Be sure to plug in your Trophy when possible to receive the update and inform us when you do in the comments below.

Thanks to everyone who tipped us on this!

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Verizon have returned with an announcement that the Windows Phone Tango update is almost ready to fire up for their HTC Trophy handsets. Customers will be able take advantage of new features and functionality in the next version of Windows Phone. This will begin to prep consumers for the Windows Phone 7.8 update which is sat on the horizon.

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Chris Weber, president of Nokia’s North America unit, is at it again, teasing us with the possibility of seeing Nokia Windows Phone devices on all of the major carriers across North America.

In an interview with Bloomberg, Weber reiterated comments that he made back in January, when he said that the key to Nokia's comeback would be offering "unique propositions" to each carrier so they can set their phones apart from the iPhones and Androids of the world. Weber shared,

“We’re back in the U.S., we’re back in Canada -- it’s exciting, but there’s more work to do.”

Nokia's partnership with AT&T has been hugely successful for the Lumia 900, and others to a lesser extent. The Lumia 710 is on T-Mobile now, but it is rumored that a Lumia 910, a slightly-modified version of the 900 with a 12MP camera, is headed there as well. Verizon Wireless is also rumored to be getting a Nokia handset as well.

While Weber's words of building special relationships with different carriers are certainly encouraging, these deals still need to come to fruition, so temper your expectations. While Weber didn't get into any specifics on what work is to be done, don't expect to see any carrier get some completely new and different device that nobody else has.

Heck, we'd be happy enough just to see Verizon and Sprint step up and get any Nokia phones at all.

Source: Bloomberg

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Many of you should now be familiar with Chris Parnell if you're outside the US. The funny man is widely known for his work on perpetual sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live and has recently been the voice of Nokia's Lumia 900 campaign. Personally, we dig him a lot as he's got a great voice and presence.

Last night on the season finale of SNL, Parnell (who left the show years ago) teamed back up with Andy Samberg for a sequel to their song "Lazy Sunday". The video can be seen on Hulu (if you're in the US) and it's certainly well worth the watch, especially on this gorgeous weekend.

What makes last night's performance funny (at least for us phone geeks) was the screen capture teased for the video's premier. Verizon brazenly sponsored the show last night and it was borderline spammed all over their Facebook page and Tweets, often featuring cheesy 4G LTE "video interviews" of terrible quality.

As you can see in the image above, that's Parnell speaking on a glossy-white Lumia 900 (as he should be) and the image is of course posted by, Verizon. While certainly an inadvertent coincidence, it does ring a bit funny since the carrier is so lukewarm to Windows Phone. Of course no one will get the joke except for us but that's okay.

On top of that, Verizon is evidently buying up Nokia keywords on Twitter. In the above image, that was a search for "Lumia". Bad Verizon, bad.

Thanks, Jay S., for the screen cap!

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According to Nokia's U.S. president Chris Weber, sales of the Lumia 900, which recently launched in the states, has been outpacing supply. We've covered how the LTE Windows Phone has been out of stock more-so than anything else, which is having an effect on other markets looking to stock the device.

It would appear as though the sellout on AT&T is indeed due to demand and not simply a case of not stocking anywhere near enough units for launch, with little demand / interest present.

"Demand has been outstripping supply for the first couple of weeks, and we've been working hard to rectify that. The demand for cyan [phones] is significantly outpacing supply. When you give people something different from a design perspective—colors, etc. —it really stands out, and consumers want that."

As well as discussing AT&T and how the Lumia 900 is selling, Weber also touched on actual AT&T retail store support for the Windows Phone.

"Generally, we’re seeing very good support. It’s a work in progress."

It would appear as though Verizon is on Nokia's goal list for the future with the understanding that having the CDMA carrier on-board as well as AT&T would certainly boost growth for both the manufacturer and Windows Phone. Unfortunately, no details were revealed surrounding Windows Phone 8 "Apollo" upgrades for Lumia smartphone owners.

"Both Nokia and Microsoft understand the importance for consumers to keep their devices fresh and updated. Without any announcements being made, we're working to make sure people have fresh and updated experiences on any device they may have."

Microsoft has come a long way since Windows Mobile and the NoDo rollout following MIX'11. Nokia has a lot riding on the Lumia family of Windows Phones to rebuild the strong brand the company had many years ago when bricks were still being held to our ears. Will we see "Apollo" on our current devices? We can't possibly say, but we wouldn't rule the possibility out.

Source: PCMag; thanks everyone who tipped us!

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While Verizon Wireless does off the HTC Trophy as the company's one and only Windows Phone, customers have been wanting more selection out of the wireless provider for some time. Based on what Verizon's executive vice president and chief financial officer Fran Shammo said during a conference call, Verizon customers may finally see more Windows Phone becoming available.

Shammo said he was fully supportive of Microsoft and discussed the need for a third mobile ecosystem in the wireless industry. This is a bit of a change from late last year when Verizon had issues with the lack of LTE support coming from Microsoft. The feeling was that Verizon would continue to focus on Android devices as their center piece.

If Verizon was waiting for LTE support, the Nokia Lumia 900 and HTC Titan II should prove that LTE support exists with Windows Phones. Another sign that Verizon may be coming around on Windows Phones is the recent announcement of the 8107 update for the HTC Trophy.

Based on Shammo's comments the chances of additional Windows Phones joining the Verizon line up seems promising.  Could we see a Verizon Lumia 900? Or maybe a Verizon Titan II?  

Source: CNET; Thanks, Anonymous, for the tip!

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The My Verizon Mobile app has received a makeover, but not the type of makeover that improves visual appeal. With the recent Verizon HTC Trophy update, which was warmly welcomed, the carrier also rolled out an update to their Windows Phone app. Should you enter the app you might be surprised by what you're presented with.

As one can see in the above image, something's gone terribly wrong. The reviews on the Marketplace are heading downhill as one could imagine, so if you're a frequent user and enjoy an aesthetically pleasing experience, we advise you stay away from the app update.

Via: WinSource

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We broke the news the other night that Verizon Wireless was set to roll out the latest (or nearly the latest) Windows Phone OS update, version 8107, to HTC Trophy users on its network. That update not only fixes security issues but addresses the disappearing keyboard bug that has driven many mad for the last few months.

We've now received a flood of tips that the update is currently live and if you plug in your Trophy to Zune Desktop you'll be greeted with an update notification. Actually, you'll eventually have three updates to install as it's cumulative:

  • OS 7740
  • OS 8107
  • HTC Firmware

So sit tight as the backup process will vary from device device and will depend on how much "stuff" you have on your phone. Let us know in comments if all has gone well.

Thanks to all who tipped us! Thanks, Vance, for the image.

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While Verizon deservedly gets a lot of flack for their shunning of Windows Phone, especially with their single offering of the HTC Trophy, they at least seem set on keeping that phone up to date.

If you navigate to the support page for the HTC Trophy on Verizon's site, you'll notice that information regarding the previous radio update has been removed. Instead, users are greeted with details on the latest software update: 2305.13.20402.605.

While that number doesn't reveal the OS version (8107), reading the new features and fixes reveals that indeed it has to be 8107 since it fixes the disappearing keyboard. Here are the new fixes and enhancements:

  • Improved Voice Mail notifications when traveling outside the U.S.
  • Enhanced Cellebrite contact transfer performance.
  • Improvements in keyboard performance prevent keyboard from disappearing while typing.
  • Device is enabled with the Wireless Alerting System.
  • Improved device performance when downloading large software update files.
  • Original messages will be included when replying or forwarding an email via an Exchange 2003 server.
  • Improvements in text messaging performance

No word on exactly when this update will begin being pushed but seeing as Verizon is coming forward with the details, we're going to say it's imminent. So good new for you Verizon folks, not so great news if you're on AT&T or Sprint.

Source: Verizon Support (PDF); Thanks, Ryan T., for the heads up!

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Verizon passes up on Nokia 'Om' Windows Phone?

According to sources familiar with company plans, The Verge has reported that Verizon may have passed up on a Nokia Windows Phone 7.5 handset. Microsoft Stores were ready to stock the Nokia device, codenamed "Om", late January / early February but the carrier canceled due to concerns over lack of Verizon LTE support.

If this rumour is true, Verizon will be joining Sprint where both may well be waiting for "Apollo" to introduce new Windows Phones to customers. For the mean time, the HTC Trophy will be the only Windows Phone available on Verizon. More interestingly, this info seems to contradict earlier information from Paul Thurrott who noted that a Lumia 710 (with no LTE) was headed to Big Red sooner than later.

Either way, this is not good news for those on CDMA in the US who want a modern Windows Phone.

Source: The Verge; thanks Craig for the heads up!

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We're getting a lot of reports in from readers that Verizon is now pushing out their radio firmware update for the HTC Trophy. We reported on this a few days ago, noting that it would fix the GSM roaming issue that many faced when returning to the US.  The update brings users to the following:

  • OS version: 7.10.7720.68 (same)
  • Firmware revision number: 2305.13.20110.605
  • Radio software version: 1.53.00.12.01_23.17w.05.13U

Note, some users are reporting that this brings the 8107 OS update. As far as we can tell, it does not nor should users expect that update to happen anytime soon (though who knows what Verizon's plans are).

For users though who "forced" their Trophy's to 8107, you probably just blocked your radio update as the server's won't recognize your device as matching those needing this fix. We have a few reports from our forums of just a scenario and for you, we have no answer how to "force" this update. Of course, we did warn users on our Podcast that forcing the 8107 update may have unintended consequences and that's what we are seeing now.

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Verizon is getting ready to roll out a firmware update for their HTC Trophy.  The rollout upgrades the radio to provide "improved data connectivity in certain scenarios when Connection Setup application is installed."  Little other detail is provided, nor a date in which the update will be made available.  The instructions simply note that users will receive a notification on their handsets.  You can see the update details here and keep an eye on the source link to see if further information gets added. 

Source: Verizon; Thanks for tip, Dave!

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Paul Thurrott, over at his supersite for Windows, has revealed some information that will be later announced at the upcoming CES.   In the article Thurrott notes the carrier will be shipping the Nokia Lumia 710 (code name "Sword" a name we've seen before) in April 2012, and it's not certain what the plan is with Verizon and an LTE Windows Phone. Hopefully a more powerful handset will be featured in the next year. We'll have to see how Microsoft and manufacturers plan to push forward.

What is clear though, assuming this is accurate, is that Verizon is not at all keen on Windows Phone, with our without LTE or with Nokia's backing. That's some cojones, in our opinion and a big middle finger to their customers.

The Lumia 710 will be available on T-Mobile in January 2012, which will provide the T-Mobile three months exclusivity before Verizon begins shipping.

Source: WinSuperSite

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Nokia has just sent out invites for their press event next month at CES in Las Vegas. While word is mum on what they plan to show off in the 45 minute event, rumors have been swirling for some time that an AT&T (and maybe Verizon) device announcement could be on the agenda. Such a device (or devices?) could be the rumored Nokia 900 "Ace"--a 4.3" screen device akin to the Lumia 800--destined for AT&T and featuring LTE. Other possibilities include an LTE-enabled Lumia 800, which may lack the punch of a 900-esque device but we think would still be a large seller here.

Verizon is also rumored to be picking up a Nokia device or two, presumably because it would feature LTE on board, satisfying their demands.

Either way, this announcement can only be good news for Windows Phone and Nokia, both of which are vying for the public attention. Landing on AT&T and/or Verizon would be a huge boost in numbers and visibility for both companies, in addition to giving customers what they really want, a high-end "classy" Windows Phone that can compete with the iPhone and Android. It also seems to us that Nokia has really put into high gear getting these devices to the US market, especially with the launch of the T-Mobile Lumia 710 and their media campaign dubbed "Rolling Thunder".

Good news for our readers is we'll be front and center at CES for this press event and others, so we'll have your coverage that you deserve.

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We told you back in September that Microsoft was working with content providers to bring television and movies to XBox 360.  Verizon, one of said providers, has announced that a FiOS TV app will be coming to XBox 360 next month, which will allow subscribers to watch their FiOS channels directly through their XBox.  The app will feature an initial lineup of 26 channels, with more to come later, and will also be integrated with Kinect, so users can surf using voice and gesture commands.

If that weren't cool enough, Verizon is sweetening the deal by offering a $89.99/month bundle to new subscribers, which includes FiOS TV, 35/35Mbps internet, and voice service.  Subscribers will also get a 12-month XBox Live membership and HALO: Combat Evolved Anniversary Edition.  Verizon is taking orders for this contract-free bundle from now until January 21.  Current FiOS customers can call now to sign up.

To celebrate the lunch of their new service, Verizon is partnering with gaming network Machinima to sponsor the Gamers’ Choice Award, to be announced at Machinima’s Inside Gaming Awards on Dec. 9. You can vote for your game of the year through Facebook or Twitter.  Your vote also enters you a chance to win a grand prize of two years of Verizon FiOS triple-play service, a multi-room DVR, a Microsoft Kinect and 40,000 Microsoft points.  There are also daily 4,000 MS point prizes until December 8.

Source: Verizon

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Just last night we're discussing on the podcast how Nokia wants to make a big splash here in the US. To do so, they want to launch with a flag-ship devices and what better way to do that than with AT&T--a dedicated partner of Microsoft and Windows Phone?

So perhaps it is of little surprise that The Verge are reporting that AT&T and Nokia are working together for a 4G LTE device sometime early next year. That jives with what Andy Lees told us the other day in that Nokia was being aggressive about getting LTE-supported builds of the OS to work with.

The article goes on to suggest that this device, a variant of the Lumia 800, might be running the follow up to Windows Phone 7.5 "Mango" which is code-named "Tango" at this time. Likewise, Verizon is also rumored to be getting such a device, seeing as they too run an LTE network.

This all of course works well with our earlier finding of the Nokia "Champagne" Windows Phone. That device, coincidentally, is running OS 8711 which is a Tango build. The Champagne was first picked up on October 25th by the app "I'm a WP7!" making it relatively new and a prime candidate for such an AT&T/Verizon phone.

Source: The Verge

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HTC Trophy on sale at Verizon

We're not sure if this is a way to clear out inventory for new Windows Phones or just Verizon being generous. Regardless, Verizon is offering the HTC Trophy for $29.99 through October 20, 2011.

The deal is web only so you'll probably not see the $29.99 price tag in your local Verizon stores. The discounted price does call for a two year contract and minimum data package of $30.  Oh and if you're so inclined the Casio G'zOne Commando is also on sale.

You can find all the details on the three day web sale over here at Verizon's website.

Thanks goes out to Reese for the tip!

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Verizon Trophy for a penny at Amazon

If you have been holding out on getting a Verizon Trophy, wait no more.  Amazon is selling them for a single penny with free shipping when you open a new line of service.  This deal is part of a larger Verizon "Penny-pincher"  promotion on Amazon that features all of their Verizon handsets for one cent.  The offer runs between 5:00 p.m. PDT October 11, 2011, through 11:59 p.m. PDT October 17, 2011, or while supplies last.

Source: Amazon

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Take this how you will, but it's a good sign in our book when your official Verizon stores are displaying their one and only Windows Phone, the venerable HTC Trophy, running 7720.68 aka Mango.

These pics were taken by reader aphrophyre at the Broadway & 17th Street, New York store today. Does this mean absolutely that Mango is coming the 27th? Nope, but we like the odds that it's coming sooner than later.

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