Microsoft's giving away Windows Phones to those frustrated with BlackBerry

In another great publicity stunt, Microsoft, via Windows Phone evangelist Ben Rudolph, is giving away 25 Windows Phones to those with the best BlackBerry stories of why they are frustrated with the company and their phones.

In case you didn't know, RIM is undergoing some serious issues right now with their BES Email and BIS service, where customers are experiencing major issues world-wide. It's been so bad that the company had to hold a press conference to address that matter (and which did little to alleviate any concern). Needless to say, this is doing nothing for RIM's image nor their plummeting market share and stock.

So it's nice to see Microsoft taking a dig by trying to get a few users to switch over. While 25 is nice, we say Microsoft should aim a little higher though, to really drive the nail in. But that's us.

Read all the coverage on the RIM outage here at our sister site,

Source: @BenThePCGuy; via @BillCox/@manan

Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007 when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and for some reason, watches. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.

  • I applaud this style of evangelism. Now all they have to do is some billboards, frequent commercials, and movie/tv show product placements.
  • I've seen WP7 devices in most of the new shows... Hawaii Five-O, Castle, Bones... Etc. Still, there can always be more! I'd love to see a Focus for HD7s on every show on CBS and Fox!
  • Wonder if it will help. Anywho, I just watched the season premier of Hawaii Five-O and i spy the Dell Venue Pro making a cameo apperance.
  • Yeah Microsoft why not 500?
  • The outing got resolved already.
  • Hey MS try commercials, i know its crazy, but it might just work. :)
  • Much too esoteric a solution for the stuffed shirts at Microsoft!
  • @BenThePCGuy I want to upgrade to windows phone, because my BlackBerry(BlackDevil) has turned me into Blackout(Berry). Pls spare me one
  • Don't get me wrong I have really enjoyed using my focus but my BlackBerry will always be my got to device. I have come to the conclusion that having a BlackBerry and WP7 a phone are the most compatible for what I need. And they should have offered more.
  • Good God, Microsoft. Instead of giving away 25 free phones, why don't you try making your phones available to people to buy. You might be able to make a bigger dent in Android and Apple's market share if you start selling people phones, rather than giving some away to 0.0001% of the population. I'm on Sprint and want a phone running WP7 BADLY. But they only phone they offer is the Arrive, which I used for 2 weeks and hated because of the flip out keyboard.Just split the difference between the Android situation--where there are a dozen phones per provider--and the current WP7 situation--1 phone per provider--and you might actually sell some phones. Just a few solid phones at each carrier in a form factor that people actually want would work wonders. You could combine this with something called "advertisements", which help make people realize your product even exists.
  • I actually like the Arrive quite a bit, and the slide out keyboard is a big reason. I agree that Microsoft should work with the carriers a little more to get more than one form factor on the big networks, but it bugs me when people generalize their feelings for a phone as being the case for everyone.
  • I like the Arrive too. I think I've used the keyboard twice since I got the phone last April. The WP7 onscreen keyboard is better.
  • I'm running Symbian. Wouldn't mind an upgrade ;-) I might even stop attacking WP7 on all the blogs. Think about it. Hahahahaha.
  • How about a Kin phone instead? lol
  • LOL. Yo guys. You know what? Try search "@BenThePCGuy" on Twitter and see what you get!RIM China's office is right across ours. They've hired a big bunch of uncivilized barbarians who keep laughing (sound more like shrieking), talking loudly on phone, playing video clips at top volume, in a *shared* office space. So when I saw this article I went to twitter, hoping to get some nice BB frustration stories I can print out and stick on their door.What I got was a long list of tweets, but mostly from *Android* and *iOS* users complaining how disappointed they are at their platforms. WP7 is going great it looks like. :DAs to Blackberry users, apparently they have their own frustration corner established already. Track the hashtag #BBFail. Comes in all kinds of languages...
  • I like the strategy, but really how about showing that same level of enthusiasm on some advertisments. giving away a few phones on twitter isnt going to cut it. I have this awful picture of a big warehouse full of unsold WP7's and MS employees trying to find ppl who will take one for free. like the webOS (did that translate into any new apps btw?) ppl and now BB users.
  • Guys, they have to pay for these phones to give away. The manufacture does not give them to Microsoft for free.So these 25 phones are costing them ~ 25 x $500, which is $12,500!The proposed 500 phones would cost them $250,000.That money would be MUCH better spent on conventional advertising.
  • $250,000 is what?, one primetime 20 second commercial?And we all know MS doesn't have very much cash, right?
  • How about giving them away to HD7s Owners?Looks like we count below BlackBerry Owners in MSoft's opinion at the moment.
  • DOH!
  • Darn! 5 months ago I WAS one of the frustrated users, and switched to WP7. Now I'm stuck (im)patiently waiting for Mango, with a phone I paid for.
  • Being a BB owner, I waited and waited for AT&T to release the 9900 as it was going to be my next phone. While I waited, I discovered WP7 and was so impressed that I decided my next phone would be a Win 7.5 phone as I also discovered that AT&T was about to release 3 new Windows phones. Well, AT&T has yet to release the 9900 OR the new Win 7.5 phones and this is my greatest complaint. What the devil is taking so long? I follow daily any news regarding release dates and as I wait I see that every carrier in the world now has these new phones EXCEPT AT&T. It is clear to me that AT&T wants the be the Vanguard of Windows phones so why do they drag out the release of these new phones? To try and reduce inventory? In my opinion, this is a bad strategy. Put them on sale like they did with the iPhone 3G. I don't want an iPhone, I've tried Android, I've lost interest in BB, why don't you start selling what could be the new age in phone OS's?
  • Memo to HTC & MICROSOFT:If you want to sell mango phones how about getting the carriers (AT&T) to release them? Duh!!!My Tilt2 is getting flacky - It is on its last legs. So about two months ago I decided to jump to the Titan. But there's been no further information since the initial AT&T US press release, and even the specs are hidden away on the HTC world pages (not normally available by default to internet users in the US)So what gives? Is there any hope??If not, or if my Tilt 2 dies before the Titan is available on AT&T I will probably jump ship and go with the ANDROID THUNDERBOLT on VERIZON. Several of my friends have the Thudnerbolt, they love it, and I am impressed . . .It would be a change after ~15 years on AT&T, but HTC & AT&T must realize that the world is not static. (or maybe they would sell you a nice DR DOS computer, or an Atari . . .)