Verizon may finally be preparing to start offering a Windows Phone 7 smartphone, following months of rumors about the launch date.
The operator now is hosting a Windows Phone discussion forum on its website. So far, just over a dozen people have posted to the forum, most discussing when the phones might actually go on sale.
Also this week, a blogger spotted a page on Best Buy advertising the HTC Trophy 7 Windows Phone on Verizon. The page appeared only briefly.
The first Windows Phone 7 smartphones came out in the U.S. in November last year, starting with operators including AT&T and T-Mobile that use the GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) standard. Microsoft said it would soon release a version of the operating system for CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) operators, which include Verizon and Sprint.
Sprint started offering the HTC Arrive, which runs Windows Phone 7, in late March.
Verizon continues to officially say that it will offer a Windows smartphone, without specifying a time frame.
Rumors of an imminent launch of a Verizon Windows Phone have regularly popped up, as far back as November.
Verizon and Microsoft are thought to have a strained relationship since the botched launch of the Kin phones last year. Sales of the phones were reportedly very slow and Microsoft killed off the products in just over two months.
Nancy Gohring covers mobile phones and cloud computing for The IDG News Service. Follow Nancy on Twitter at @idgnancy. Nancy’s e-mail address is Nancy_Gohring@idg.com