Microsoft, Nokia pour $200M into Windows Phone push, report says

The two companies are betting on a big launch in the U.S., which is crucial to Windows Phone's longer-term fate.

Sarah Tew/ CNET

Microsoft and Nokia are ready to back the money truck up for Windows Phone.

That's according to Windows IT Pro, which reported today that the companies are planning to spend $200 million on marketing in the U.S. to promote the upcoming lineup of phones.

The significant surge in spending underscores the importance of making a splash in the market, particularly from a phone brand that has faded over the past few years and a software partner that lacks the cool factor of its younger competitors. While T-Mobile USA has the first Nokia Windows Phone with the mid-tier Lumia 710, much of the focus will be on the widely expected launch of a higher-end device at the Consumer Electronics Show.

The Lumia 800 is expected to make its U.S. debut at CES, as well as a higher-end LTE-compatible Lumia 900. AT&T is expected to be the carrier partner for the phone, and could make one of the devices its new flagship product.

Windows IT Pro reports that the marketing budget will include sales incentives for retail workers designed to get them to recommend Windows Phone devices. In the past, sales representatives have been reluctant to recommend Windows Phones, instead pushing better-known Android devices and the iPhone.

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