Would you swap your iPhone for a Windows Phone?
It's the weekend, the time when you can wear your favorite sloppy shirts, stained shorts, and wedgie Skechers.
It's also the time that you can take a look at your iPhone or Android machine and see if you really love it anymore.
Microsoft, you see, believes your smartphones are baloneyphones. So this weekend, in all 14 Microsoft stores, it's holding a "Smoked by Windows Phone" challenge.
This is not an invitation for you to bring your favorite ham or bacon to the shop in order to have it perfectly sizzled. Instead, it's Microsoft's entertaining attempt to prove that Windows Phones are simply faster.
It works like this: if your phone is demonstrably faster, you get $1,000. Well, actually a "Hunger Games" Special Edition PC, worth $1,000.
If it isn't, you get the chance to swap your beloved gadget for a brand new Windows Phone. And you won't even have to sign a contract.
Well, not a phone contract, but Microsoft would like you to sign on the dotted line in order to appear in a future ad. (I have embedded an example of a previous challenge.)
I am grateful to The Verge for pointing my eyes to this excitement, given that it's pouring with rain in the Bay Area and my iPhone and I have celebrated our first anniversary. Yes, I worry our relationship is becoming stale.
It seems that in previous challenges, there was merely $100 at stake. Now, with a "Hunger Games" PC in the balance, surely there will be thousands of willing participants.
One question some might have though is whether speed is the best reason to switch phones. For some, perhaps. But there are all those emotional intangibles that also rear their vain heads. You know, the prettiness intangibles. (You can see the iPhone 4S beat the Windows Phone for speed, if not prettiness, in the video embedded below.)
Still, having played with the Nokia Lumias at CES, I found them to be certainly something you would not be embarrassed to put down on a bar. The slight shame in this weekend's challenge, however, is that you won't be able to swap your phone for a Nokia Lumia 800.
The rules have even more specificities. Microsoft limits the areas in which the challenge will be made: "Pocket-to-Picture-to-Post, Real-Time Information with Live Tiles, Using the People Hub to Stay in Touch with the People You Care About Most, Updating Your Status Across Multiple Social Networks, and Local Scout ('Challenge')."
I confess to having no full idea of what that last area might entail, which can only serve to make the whole thing more entertaining.
Will Microsoft stores all over America be full of discarded iPhones and Galaxy SIIs by this weekend's end? This is surely more exciting than "The Hunger Games."