Best Buy is set to become the first U.S. retail partner outside of Apple and AT&T to offer the Apple iPhone 3G. Both the 8GB and 16GB versions will be offered starting on September 7th. The announcement comes just after Best Buy completed upgrades to its computer systems to handle mobile phone activations and its Best Buy Mobile departments inside U.S. stores.
The move will broaden customer access to the iPhone 3G. With AT&T reporting up to 10 days waiting period for customers, adding some 970 Best Buy stores and 16 Best Buy Mobile stores will put Apple in a better position to meet demand for the current back-to-school and upcoming holiday shopping seasons.
Best Buy, which already sells Macs and iPods, will sell the iPhone 3G at the same price as those set by Apple (USD$199 for 8GB model and USD$299 for 16GB model). A two-year contract with AT&T will also be required.