There are falls from grace, and there are falls from grace. Microsoft's KIN
line is definitely in that more severe category, and it's made even worse by the fact that it's the world's largest software maker taking the hit. This is a company that should have known better than to put an unwanted phone into the market place, but obviously some folks can only learn the hard way. Microsoft already revealed that they were pulling the plug on KIN, but now it looks like Verizon Wireless is doing them the favor ahead of schedule.
As of now, consumers can no longer see nor buy a KIN One or KIN Two online, and there are widespread reports that Verizon
-- which was the only U.S. carrier to have these phones -- is shipping remaining inventory right back to Microsoft
. Ouch. It's one thing to let a product die gracefully, but when Verizon feels that there's essentially no chance for them to sell what's left of the KIN stock, well…that speaks volumes.
Of course, the "being sent back" part has yet to be confirmed or acknowledged by Microsoft, but it wouldn't be surprising. Microsoft had a difficult time selling the KIN, and Verizon has plenty of better phones to sell. They obviously don't want a dead product cluttering up their product shelves. In reality, it was the data price that sealed KIN's fate, in our opinion. Had Microsoft been able to offer the KIN with a $5/month or so data plan, tweens may have snapped it up. But for $30/month, why not just get an iPhone, DROID Incredible or Palm Pre Plus? Hopefully KIN can rest in peace soon enough, but it looks like it'll have to endure one more bout with embarrassment when it hits the UPS truck, this time in reverse.