Kin fallout continues: only 503 sold tips insider, red faces all round at Microsoft

Jul 8, 2010
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In the aftermath of Kin's demise, details of the mis-management and general botched effort continue to seep out of Microsoft.  Business Insider quotes an anonymous Microsoft employee who says there's "embarrassment all over campus from the rank and file about the Kin announcement" while John Gruber has heard that Verizon sold a grand total of 503 Kin handsets; that fits in with previously rumored figures, though Microsoft still insist they shipped at least twice that amount.

"We had a huge launch party on campus and I bet that party cost more than the amount of revenues we took in on the product.  As an employee, I am embarrassed.  As a shareholder, I am pissed.  It's one thing to incubate products and bring them to a proof-of-concept to see what works, but it's something else to launch.  I suspect we launched because we felt like we HAD to so we could save face because we were trying to build buzz, but overall - HUGE fail." Anonymous Microsoft employee

Meanwhile over at Mini-Microsoft there's an unsurprising tirade of negativity about Kin and the way the project was handled, together with some blame being shared around the company's top management.  General Manager Matt Bencke is tipped as responsible for approving Verizon's inflated data charges and "the one who used those projections to get the Danger deal through" while Terry Myerson and Andrew Lees both come in for criticism.

Update: Pocketnow is pointing to the Kin Facebook app - which has over 8,800 monthly active users - as evidence that Microsoft may well have sold more handsets than the 503 Gruber heard about.


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