Growing the Windows Phone user base will require a lot of steps, not the least of which is simply exposing more potential users to Windows Phone in the first place. Sure, advertisements can go a long way towards generating interest in a platform, but that might not even be able to hold a candle to real-world run-ins with actual handsets, getting to see them in action. That sounds like what Microsoft’s hoping for with one of its latest partnerships, working with Delta to get some 19,000 Lumia 820 phones into the hands of flight attendants.
On board Delta’s planes, the 820s will serve as mobile point-of-sale terminals, letting the crew process transactions from passengers wishing to rent headsets or purchase food and drink. Card scanning accessories let attendants use these 820s to run orders right from the passenger’s seat, helping to streamline things and speed up service. Software will also help these employees access schedule information, customer manifests, and assist with directing passengers to connecting flights.
Considering all those thousands of Windows Phone handsets going up in the air, as well as all the business travelers who will be subsequently exposed to their presence, and we wonder if Microsoft isn’t ultimately aiming here to build up some buzz for Windows Phone’s enterprise cred a little.