Microsoft bets on AT&T with latest Lumia, will also sell both new phones unlocked – The Verge

Microsoft’s new Lumia 950 and 950 XL smartphones announced earlier this week are especially hard to acquire outside of the company’s official stores. Executives didn’t originally disclose carrier information onstage and, when pressed for details today, said AT&T would sell the smaller, 5.2-inch Lumia 950, though not as an exclusive. While owning up to the lack of carrier support, Microsoft said its focus is mainly on selling the devices unlocked for now.

“We’re refocusing our channel strategy, narrowing it in the short-term and plan for broader operator availability longer term. While there was interest across the board from U.S. operators, currently we’ve made the decision to have AT&T carry the Lumia 950, and then sell both the Lumia 950 and Lumia 950 XL unlocked through our own channel in the Microsoft Stores,” a company spokesman told ZDNet. In Europe, Microsoft says Deutsche Telekom will carry both phones, and that it will be discussing expanding availability to other carriers in the future.

Microsoft says carriers were interested

T-Mobile CEO John Legere strongly criticized Microsoft on Twitter yesterday, blasting the company for choosing AT&T as the lone US carrier for its latest Lumia. But Legere has also suggested T-Mobile remains open to carrying the device(s) “if Microsoft wakes up.”

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