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Nokia to launch flagship smartphone on Verizon this year -- report

Nokia's Lumia 900 users on AT&T will also be the first to get the Windows Phone 7.8 update, according to internal AT&T documents.

The Lumia 900 is getting Windows Phone 7.8 soon.
The Lumia 900 is getting Windows Phone 7.8 soon.
CBS Interactive

Nokia is readying a flagship smartphone for Verizon Wireless, a new report claims.

Verizon is planning to carry the Lumia handset later this year, The Verge is reporting today, citing people who claim to have knowledge of the company's plans. That device, codenamed Laser, will "be a variant" of Nokia's Lumia 920, but it's not clear what sort of features the handset will have.

According to The Verge, Nokia's device will be put on the same playing field as Verizon's other flagship devices, including the iPhone.

Nokia CEO Stephen Elop hinted at a flagship phone for Verizon in an interview with CNET last month.

The addition of a flagship Nokia device on Verizon's network would complement the Lumia 822 currently running on the service. The Lumia 822 is free with a two-year contract.

In other Nokia news, the company's Lumia 900 will be getting an upgrade to Windows Phone 7.8 next week, according to a new report.

Windows Phone fan site WP Central yesterday reported that the operating system update will be coming to AT&T Lumia 900 owners on January 30. The blog is basing its report on an internal AT&T e-mail that it claims to have obtained detailing the update.

Windows Phone 7.8 was announced last year alongside Windows Phone 8. Products running Windows Phone 7, like the Lumia 900, were unable to be updated to Windows Phone 8, leaving Microsoft to build an upgrade for customers who would have been left out in the cold.

Windows Phone 7.8 includes a host of changes, including a new Start screen, new theme colors, and an improved lock screen. The update will be made available free of charge to Lumia 900 owners.

CNET has contacted Nokia for comment on both reports. We will update this story when we have more information.