updated 12:35 pm EDT, Fri May 29, 2009
Sprint May Toss Pre Rebate
Sprint may drop its controversial mail-in rebate for the Palm Pre in a bid to keep customers. A contact within Sprint said late Thursday that there are "minor rumblings" within the carrier that could switch the $100 mail discount to an instant rebate. The move is said by Palm Goon to be a reaction to pricing at Best Buy and Radio Shack, both of which are already promising an immediate discount to sell their Pres at $199.
While Sprint had likely been counting on the rebate to boost its profitability for the Pre -- which is heavily subsidized down from its $550 off-contract price -- the company is believed to have relaxed its attitude. By driving customers to its own stores, Sprint expects to compensate through accessory sales from customers looking to outfit the Pre at the same time as they pick up the phone itself.
The claim is a rumor and is also qualified by noting that nothing is definitive regarding Sprint's plans.