Microsoft cuts price of unlocked Windows Phone handset to $129

The latest offer in Microsoft's 12 Days of Deals is for an unlocked version of a Windows Phone 8.1 handset from Blu Products.

Screenshot by Lance Whitney/CNET

Those of you looking an unlocked Windows Phone handset at a budget-friendly price may want to check out Microsoft's latest deal.

Unveiled on Tuesday as the second offering in Microsoft's 12 Days of Deals, the phone in question is a BLU Win HD handset running Windows Phone 8.1. Normally selling for $179, the phone is $129 for Tuesday only. Okay, that sounds like a healthy price cut. But what exactly is a BLU Win HD phone?

Developed by a company called BLU Products, the phone up for sale offers a 5-inch IPS HD capacitive touchscreen with a 1,280x720 resolution. Powered by a quad-core 1.2 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 processor, the BLU Win HD comes with 1GB of memory and 8GB of internal storage. An 8-megapixel autofocus camera is in the rear, while a 2-megapixel camera faces front.

The unlocked phone also offers dual SIM cards so you can switch from one carrier to another. But, and yes, there is a but here. The phone does not support 4G LTE, so you're stuck with a device that uses HSPA+, which can't match the speed of LTE. The phone is compatible only with GSM carriers, such as AT&T and T-Mobile. So Verizon and Sprint subscribers are out of the loop.

The offer is available both online and at select Microsoft retail stores in the US, Canada and Puerto Rico and is valid only for December 9 or while supplies last. As a bonus, the first 50 customers who buy the phone at one of Microsoft's retail stores will receive a door-buster discount, which in this case lowers the price tag to $99.

The lack of 4G LTE support could be a deal breaker here for Windows Phone buyers. But an unlocked phone selling for $129 or potentially $99 could be a draw for many consumers. Just be sure to read all the reviews at the bottom of the Microsoft product page to see what other buyers think of the phone.

Targeting no-contract and unlocked mobile phones toward consumers in the US and Latin America, BLU Products says that it has sold more than 10 million BLU mobile devices in over 40 countries.

Microsoft's holiday-oriented 12 Days of Deals runs through December 19. Wednesday's deal offers $50 off the cost of an Xbox One plus a free game.