CHEAPER: Nokia has halved the price of the Lumia 900 in the United States to $49.99. The price requires a two-year contract with AT&T.

STRATEGY: One analyst says the price cut was a way for Nokia to "drive down inventories" before the launch of the first devices using a newer version of Windows Phone software, expected in the fourth quarter.

THE BACKDROP: Once the world's dominant mobile phone maker, Nokia is facing tight competition in smartphones from competitors including Apple Inc. and Samsung and has struggled to make an impact in the U.S. market.