Why T-Mobile Should Choose Windows Phone for MLB and Why Microsoft Should Actively Pursue It.
In case you haven't heard, Major League Baseball and T-Mobile announced a partnership last week.
In short, landline bullpen phones are being replaced by cell phones (I wonder if they'll hear the patented T-Mobile ring tone in the pen). I think T-Mobile should choose Windows Phone for those devices and here's why.
WHAT T-MOBILE & MLB HAVE TO GAIN
First, as can be seen in the image above, Windows Phones already come in an array of colors that coordinate pretty well with a lot of the Major League team colors (mostly blue and red), and could be easily adapted to include MLB and T-Mobile branding.
With the snap-off covers on the Lumia 810, Nokia could easily make a line of custom MLB-licensed back plates which could be sold exclusively through the MLB and T-Mobile websites. Profit for MLB, the Teams, T-Mobile, Nokia and Microsoft. Plus fans would love it. That's a whole lot of "win".
As to other reasons why T-Mobile and MLB should choose Windows Phone, one needs to look to the future. Cell phones to call in relievers should be just the beginning of technology in the dugout. Imagine an app that not only can call the bullpen, but can keep track of the current pitcher's pitch count, show how the relievers in the pen stack up against the upcoming batters, etc.
Windows Phone's Panorama paradigm would lend itself to this usage very well.
Major League Baseball could also usher in a new era of interactivity by linking in-game data provided by these apps to enhance their At Bat applications and using software like Smartglass for second-screen information to accompany television broadcasts. Making fans happy and possibly attracting new ones to the game.
MICROSOFT NEEDS TO JUMP ON THIS
In the regular season there are 30 teams playing 162 games a piece. That's a total of 2,430 games broadcast on TV. I don't know how big a baseball fan you are, but if you're a regular TV viewer, you know they show the manager or pitching coach almost every time they pick up the bullpen phone. Add in the post season and All Star game and that's a potential 2,471 chances for millions of people to see Windows Phone in action . And that's if there's only pitching change. The way some coaches work, I hope they have unlimited minutes. Any we all know every broadcaster is going to make a big deal out of the change from landline to cellular (at least the first few times). That's a lot of potential exposure that Microsoft should want.
THAT'S A POTENTIAL 2,471 CHANCES FOR MILLIONS OF PEOPLE TO SEE WINDOWS PHONE IN ACTION
Microsoft needs to throw resources in the form of both advertising dollars at T-Mobile to "encourage" them to use Windows Phone" and programmers to make the interactions for all manner of related applications to broaden the reach and appeal of the game.
This could be a golden opportunity for Microsoft to get in to a relationship with MLB on the ground floor and shape the future of sports broadcasting while getting a good deal of much-needed exposure for Windows Phone.