Once again, it appears AT&T is backing Microsoft’s smartphone efforts in the US as the company sets its sites on offering a mid-range mobile experience. Recently, the Lumia 650 was officially announced by Microsoft and plans of its distribution focused mainly on European markets initially. The lack of US availability initially announced by Microsoft seemed to stoke the flames an already contentious relationship the company has with North American carriers and its smartphone distribution efforts.
However, AT&T, the single US carrier openly supporting Microsoft’s direct Windows 10 Mobile efforts is now providing a backdoor into US availability for those seeking an affordable replacement for their current low to mid-range Windows phones. News coming from Phone Scoop is indicating that, through Cricket Wireless, US-based smartphone users should be able to get their hands on the $199 Lumia 650 soon.
Cricket Wireless is a subsidiary of AT&T that provides a low-cost solution for smartphone users, and even though there is no official announcement explicitly pointing to Cricket Wireless availability, user guide documentation points towards the use of the Lumia 650 on the network.
With a user guide printed and seemingly approved by Microsoft, Cricket Wireless, or AT&T, it seems it’s only a matter of time before US smartphone users can get their hands on the Lumia 650. It would behoove Microsoft to make the Lumia 650 available onto Cricket Wireless as soon as possible, as historically, the low-to-mid-range devices such as the Lumia 520 and 640 have done much better than higher end offerings such as the Lumia 1020, 1520 and now 950 and 950 XL. Perhaps, Microsoft may be able to reclaim some lost mobile market share with the Lumia 650.