The following commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet's guest contributor program, which is separate from the company's news coverage.NEW YORK ( Trefis) -- AT&T ( T) will launch the first LTE-enabled Windows Phone, the Nokia ( NOK) Lumia 900, for $99.99 on April 8. At this price point, not only is the high-end smartphone half as expensive as the latest iPhone 4S but it is also slightly less expensive than the two-year old iPhone 4.
Higher LTE speeds will see subscribers increasingly use data-intensive applications on their smartphones. This will drive data revenue, thereby increasing ARPU levels for AT&T over the coming years. Meanwhile, limited LTE coverage will be a deterrent for many but a fallback option in the form of the carrier's HSPA+ network, which provides higher speeds than 3G and has a wider coverage area than its LTE network, should offer an interim solution. Even the Chinese telecom carriers have jumped on Nokia's Lumia line of smartphones, with the first Lumia released in China on China Telecom's network on March 28. While this Lumia model is not 4G-capable, carriers in China are looking to transition their huge 2G base to 3G. Additionally, with Andoid-based smartphones and the iPhone making up the lion's share of the smartphone market, carriers globally are hoping for the emergence of a competitive third alternative mobile ecosystem in Microsoft's ( MSFT) Windows Phone to counter Apple ( AAPL) and Google's ( GOOG) growing dominance. Click here to find out how a company's products impact its stock price at Trefis Like our charts? Embed them in your own posts using the Trefis Wordpress Plugin.