When the iPhone 3GS came out, I preordered it from Best Buy. On the day before the launch, I got a call to schedule my appointment to pick it up. Knowing that activation would be easier the day after the launch, I set my appointment for the day after. I walked in, picked up my phone and was out the door in about 20 minutes.
A recent article on The iPad Guide indicates that although it took some time before Apple allowed retailers outside of themselves and AT&T to sell the iPhone, it appears Apple is opting to increase the number of options available to consumers looking to purchase the soon-to-be-released Apple iPad. In a speech given at Goldman Sach's annual technology conference in San Francisco, Apple COO TIm Cook revealed that Apple would be selling the iPad via partners with "great assisted sales", such as Best Buy.
Best Buy has announced that the 8GB iPhone 3G will sell for only $149. What's the catch? These are refurbished devices. Similar 16GB models will sell for $249. Both of these deals represent a $50 savings over new retail prices.
All discounted phones will be sold with a 2-year service contract from AT&T and a standard one-year warranty. The devices will be in "like-new operating condition," meaning they have been returned by users within the 30-day trial period. Best Buy also offers an additional two-year Geek Squad Black Tie Protection plan.
According to reports, Best Buy will not be the only third-party reseller of the iPhone 3G for long. Wal-Mart may be joining the ranks as early as November 15th, just in time for the holiday shopping season. Does this mean we can look forward to Rollback Savings? Don't count on it.
Currently, prices for the 8GB and 16GB iPhone 3G at Best Buy are $199 and $299 respectively, the same as they are at AT&T and Apple retail stores. The product is not available on the web, since in-store activation is required.