Joining the ranks of several other retailers, the Microsoft Store is now offering the new Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+ for pre-order. The unlocked variants of both phones will start shipping on March 16th, like other retailers. The S9 is priced at $719.99 while the S9+ is $839.99.
The addition of these new Samsung phones falls in line with what the company did with the S8 last year, offering it as a pre-order. With the S7, they made a “Microsoft version” of the phone that came with several of the company’s apps pre-installed.
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If you missed out on picking up the beautifully styled Harman Kardon Invoke, powered by Microsoft Cortana, for $99 this past holiday season, now is your time. Right now at the Microsoft Store you can pick one up for that special price, saving $100 in the process.
I posted my review of the Invoke in December and as I put in that review, it is one of the most stylish smart speakers out there with stunning audio quality as you would expect from Harman Kardon. At the heart of the Invoke is Microsoft Cortana which, much like Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant, is a voice command away to help you with tasks or get information.
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The Microsoft Store, the Redmond company’s online retail site, has had a quite but important shift on their phone offerings. For the first time, the store is now selling more Android based devices than Windows 10. It is a move that isn’t overly shocking given that Microsoft has more-or-less put Windows 10 Mobile into maintenance mode.
Two Windows 10 Mobile phones have been removed from the store which caused the shift to Android. The Acer Liquid Jade Primo and Acer Liquid M330 were removed from the store yesterday, leaving only the HP Elite x3 and Alcatel IDOL 4S as offerings for Windows 10 Mobile devices. Meanwhile, the store now lists the Samsung Galaxy S8, Galaxy Note 8, and the new Razer Phone as options for shoppers.
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The value priced but powerful BLU Win HD LTE Windows Phone has made its way to the Microsoft Store and is priced at $199 unlocked. If you don’t remember, this new phone was announced just before MWC this year and is the latest in the lineup from BLU Windows Phones aimed at giving solid mid-range features at an attractive price. This new phone also eliminates one of the complaints with the BLU Win HD which is that it did not support LTE bands for higher download speeds so at $199, it is a great deal for what it has to offer.
BLU Win HD LTE – $199 – Microsoft Store
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The Lumia 1520 appears to be gone from the Microsoft Store online. The last Windows Phone flagship device, which had been offered on AT&T, has been pulled from all pages on the site either under the AT&T section or the overall Windows Phone pages. I discovered this doing some research for a post that I will be posting tomorrow and was surprised. As of Friday afternoon the Lumia 1520 was still available directly from Microsoft on a contact from AT&T or without a contract for $549.99. Now it appears the only flagship device remaining is the Lumia 830 which is $49 on contract or $399 off contract from AT&T.
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The recently announced Lumia 640 and Lumia 640XL have made their way to the Microsoft Store in the UK and are available for Pre-Order. In case you missed it, these are the two new Lumias that were announced at Mobile World Congress and are 5″ and 5.7″ mid-range Windows Phones respectively. The pricing is in line with what was expected. The Lumia 640 will be about $250 while the larger Lumia 640XL is equal to $325. Both can be pre-ordered now with a release date of April 28 being posted on the site.
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For those who are anxious to pick up the Lumia 640 or the Lumia 640XL, you may have a few weeks of waiting if the German, UK and French Microsoft Stores is any indication. The online store has posted the availability of the Lumia 640 for pre-order but delivery is not until mid-April. While this is certainly more than has been posted on the US Microsoft Store, you can assume safely that the wait times will be similar.
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Over at the Microsoft Store online you can get an exclusive color option on the BLU Win HD Windows Phone. The new Smoldering Gray color is in stark contrast to the neon-like colors that the Blue Win HD is normally found online or at your local Microsoft Store but for those who want a bit more sedate (i.e. normal) color, the Smoldering Gray option is right for you. The 5″ Windows Phone only comes in this color when you order it online but it is still the same low price of $179 unlocked.
BLU Win HD Windows Phone – Online Exclusive Smoldering Gray – $179 – Microsoft Store
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