LG to offer 10 free apps for WP7 handset buyers

Buyers of an LG Windows Phone 7 handset get to choose 10 free, third-party software apps they'll be able to install on their new device.

LG's Quantum handset will be one the two Windows Phone 7 devices to get subsidized software downloads.
LG's Quantum handset will be one of the two Windows Phone 7 devices to get subsidized software downloads. LG

The choice of which Windows Phone 7 handset to buy has just gotten a bit more complicated, but in a good way. Electronics maker LG has worked out a deal with Microsoft to subsidize the cost of what is says will be "popular" third-party software that users will be able to download free of charge during a two-month period.

In a release announcing the deal, Microsoft put the value of the yet to be announced software package at "more than $30," which is spread out across 10 applications. Microsoft says that lineup of free applications will then be replaced with new ones following the first 60-day run.

It's worth noting these applications will not be pre-installed with new phone, rather, users will have to download them from LG's Application Store, which comes bundled on LG's Windows Phone 7 devices. These applications will also differ from LG's own Windows Phone 7 apps, which can be downloaded separately and are free of charge.

Offering free software with a hardware purchase is certainly nothing new, but in the world of cell phones, doing it with third-party apps is a bit of a rarity. It also gives LG a potential leg up on competitors by targeting consumers who may be looking to save a little cash on apps when choosing between two or more similarly equipped handsets at the same price.

LG has two Windows Phone 7 devices ( that are international cousins )--the Quantum and the Optimus 7--both of which will be eligible for the subsidized software.

About the author

Josh Lowensohn joined CNET in 2006 and now covers Apple. Before that, Josh wrote about everything from new Web start-ups, to remote-controlled robots that watch your house. Prior to joining CNET, Josh covered breaking video game news, as well as reviewing game software. His current console favorite is the Xbox 360.


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