It would seem that Nokia is only making the sim-free version of its Windows Phone 7 launch handset available through a limited number of retail outlets.
The Lumia 800 has been heavily advertised over the past couple of weeks and officially launches in the UK next week.
However, online retailer Clove caused quite a stir after they posted late on Tuesday afternoon about not getting their hands on sim-free Lumia 800s to sell.
In fact, the retailer said that there wouldn’t be any sim-free handsets available at all until January 2012.
That isn’t actually the case, however – select retail outlets will be selling sim-free versions of the phone (as well as contracts) next week. A representative from Nokia called Ray posted on the Clove blog thread to point out that both the Carphone Warehouse and Three will be selling the Lumia 800 on launch day (at £470 and £399 respectively).
Phones 4u will also likely be stocking the device.
Nokia then issued a statement to say: “For the rollout of our first Lumia products, we have chosen to work with the UK operator and retail partners who shared our enthusiasm and commitment to bring these first products to market with a major focus on bringing alive the Nokia with Windows Phone experience for consumers.”
“Therefore we are making sure that by using these channels the Lumia 800 will be available to our customers in the widest variety of outlets from SIM free to contract.”
Clearly, the Lumia 800 won’t be available in a wide number of outlets, but a small number, at least in sim-free format.
Which all seems a bit odd, and leads us to ponder whether Nokia simply doesn’t have a huge amount of stock ready to roll initially.
Or that the company is artificially trying to create the vibe of a shortage. The Lumia 800 and Windows Phone Mango has generated quite some interest, so folks might now be rushing to buy their hardware next week to ensure they get one.
Or that could be the theory. At any rate, if you want to purchase sim-free away from CPW and the aforementioned outlets, it seems you’ll have to wait until the new year.