Microsoft fail: The KIN
Jun 30, 2010, 3:32 PM | Updated: Mar 28, 2011, 3:46 pm
UPDATE 7/2/10 There is now a online site to remember the KIN, RIP .
“This memorial website was created in the memory of our loved one, Microsoft Kin who was born on May 13, 2010 and passed away on June 30, 2010. We will remember her forever.”
Microsoft created an odd-shaped cell phone that was designed to be text-friendly while integrating social media platforms and appealing to teens. A second device looked more like a smart phone and was supposed to be young and hip.
Well, toss those on the pile of good Microsoft concepts that didn’t quite work.
The company won’t say directly that the KIN phones are dead, but in a short statement they confirm to me they are moving in a different direction:
“Microsoft has made the decision to focus on the Windows Phone 7 launch and will not ship KIN in Europe this fall as planned. Additionally, we are integrating our KIN team with the Windows Phone 7 team, incorporating valuable ideas and technologies from KIN into future Windows Phone releases. We will continue to work with Verizon in the U.S. to sell current KIN phones.”
They have a lot of phones available for sale. The rumor going around tech blog sites for the past few days is that only 500 of the devices have sold. Microsoft won’t confirm any sales figures.
The KIN, introduced in April, got off to a rough start with Consumer Reports calling its first ad campaign for the phone “creepy.” I wrote about that here, shortly after the phone’s debut. A month later, Microsoft’s new campaign for the KIN was criticized for “promoting risky behavior.”
KIN One is the chunky phone with a keyboard designed for rapid texting. Verizon dropped the price earlier this week from $50 to $30. KIN Two looks more like a standard slider phone with a wide screen and decent camera. The price on that dropped from $100 to $50.
With these phones being phased out, it’s clear there will be no next of kin.