With the release of the iPhone just a week away, and the open reservations that start today, your only major decision now is where to buy the new iPhone 4. With this year’s iPhone release you have a few more places to choose from to buy your new iPhone on launch day. As usual you can get your iPhone at your local Apple Store or AT&T store, as well as Best Buy. However, Apple is adding two more unlikely stores to the mix that will be selling the iPhone on launch day — Radio Shack and Walmart, so you have a total of five different stores to choose from.
I find it pretty impressive that Apple will have this many stores selling the iPhone 4 on June 24th. Out of the five stores, only Walmart will not have a reservation option, but the other four stores will give you the choice of reserving the iPhone or picking one up at their store. Let’s outline some of the differences between the stores.
The Apple Store
Let’s start with the Apple Store. You will have two buying options. The first option is an online reservation for in-store pickup or mail delivery. For the die hard fans, this should be the method of choice for getting your hands on the new iPhone. The second option is to go to the store and purchase one without a reservation.
The AT&T Store
Next up is the AT&T store. I spoke with a sales person from my local AT&T store and he said that you will be able to reserve an iPhone, but you can’t pick it up at the store, and instead it will be mailed to you. For some people this is an excellent option; however, for me it won’t workout because I usually get deliveries late in the evening. Due to UPS and Fedex routes, I’m not near any freeway, so I usually end up getting my package after 6pm. I don’t want to wait that long.
Best Buy will offer similar purchasing options as the Apple Store. So if you don’t want to fight the crowds at the mall you might want to venture to your local Best Buy. However, Best Buy might have a limited stock on hand, so I’d definitely get that reservation in as as soon as possible. This leads me to our next store – Radio Shack.
Radio Shack is doing something to make themselves stand out from the crowd. They will be offering a trade-in for your iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS. This is an excellent option for those who don’t want the hassle with eBay.com, or some of the other online sites that offer cash for used electronics. According to the sales person I spoke with, all you need to bring in is the iPhone and the power cord for the trade-in. As far as trade-in values go, I heard that they will be offering around $100.00 for the iPhone 3G, and $200.00 for the iPhone 3GS. When the sales person appraised my iPhone over the phone (by asking a few questions about the condition of my iPhone), he quoted me $119.00. When I bring in my iPhone and he does another appraisal (by actually looking at the phone), the price might go up or down. Obviously the better condition the iPhone is in, the more money you will get for it. Radio Shack will also be offering reservations for the iPhone 4; however, you have to go into the store to place your reservations. This will only show Radio Shack that you have an interest in the iPhone 4. They can’t guarantee that you will get your iPhone on the 24th, so get in early so you are higher up on the list.
Last, but not least is Walmart, who will also have the iPhone on launch day, but they will not be offering a reservation method for purchasing the iPhone 4. There will be one of two ways I see this going down. The first is that you simply walk into Walmart and purchase the iPhone on June 24th. Or, you have to wait in line, as you will with the other stores, but you are not guaranteed an iPhone 4. As Joshua Schnell pointed out in his article, Who’s gonna wait in line at a Wal-Mart for an iPhone 4?, you might “get crushed to death in a stampede…”. With that said, I too might stay away from Walmart on June 24th.
Wherever you decide to buy your iPhone 4 come June 24th, keep in mind you are more likely to get the iPhone if you reserve or pre-order it. From everything I’ve been reading lately, Apple should have ample stock to handle the demand. But, we don’t know that for sure. Personally, I’m going to go to my local Radio Shack and trade-in my iPhone 3G, and reserve my iPhone 4 there. Where will you get your iPhone 4 at? Let us know by leaving a comment in the comments section below.
Photo Credit New iPhone 4 Details, Features & Specs