The Kins have an audience, a sense of style, and—a rarity from Microsoft—a coherent philosophy. They're precocious feature phones, with the potential to make mainstream, phone-based social network not suck. So why are they priced like smartphones?
Pink. Pin? Knip? Kin. Kin! There we go. Half a year after the mysterious devices were leaked to us, the Kins are up for sale on May 6th. (Thursday.) It's been a long road in terms of rumors, with repeated leaks—renders, shots, spec dumps—scattered throughout the last six months, but in terms or the basic, conceptual core of the phone, it's been a surprisingly short road: We heard Kin, then known by its codename, Pink, would be a phone for young people. It would have Zune integration. It wouldn't be, strictly speaking, a smartphone. Its marketing would be targeted directly and shamelessly at hipsters. And that's what shipped. Two phones, the Kin One and Kin Two, previously known as the Turtle and Pure, respectively, running their own Microsoft operation system.