When Microsoft first announce the KIN One and KIN Two the reaction while not overwhelming was encouraging. Many saw the the two cell phones as an interesting play to both the younger teen set as well to those of us who don’t really need – or want – a full-fledged smartphone. The only thing really holding back any large acceptance of them was that we still had to find out the price of these social networked enabled phones.
Well as James let us know this morning the prices have been announced as well as the carrier information. It turns out that if you are willing to wait for the mail-in rebate of $100 they looked to be priced not to bad at all with the KIN One coming in at $49.99 and the larger KIN Two at $99.99.
The problem is, and what is almost certain to kill off any big adoption of the KIN’s is that Verizon has decided that they are going to want the same $30.00 data plan just as all of their other smartphones.
What Verizon is missing is that these phones aren’t being aimed at data intensive techies looking to live their online live via the newest and shiniest smartphones. The KIN’s are being aimed at teens and adults that just want to be able to connect to things like Facebook and Twitter. This literally is a sweet spot lying right between the average cell phones and those data intensive smartphones.
It is a sweet spot that is totally ignored and with Verizon deciding to go for the money rather than the increased number of new ‘social’ phones that could eventually be graduated up to the full smartphone. In the process, what may actually have been a great idea from Microsoft, the KIN will be lucky to survive beyond its initial retail launch.
Even Apple and AT&T understood this sweet spot area when it came to the iPad which surprisingly AT&T has kept its promise (so far) of an unlimited data plan for a reasonable price. Verizon on the other handle has basically stabbed Microsoft in the back with its myopic greed.