US retail giant Wal-Mart will start selling Apple’s iPhone 3G today in stores across the US, the company said on Friday, but not at the big discount that many had been anticipating.
Wal-Mart said a black eight-gigabyte iPhone 3G with a two-year service plan from AT&T will cost US$197 — just two dollars off the usual price.
The black or white 16-gigabyte model costs US$297 with a two-year AT&T service agreement.
The popular phone will be available at nearly 2,500 stores beginning today, the Bentonville, Arkansas-based company said in a statement.
“We are delighted to bring customers this ground-breaking mobile technology,” said Gary Severson, Wal-Mart’s senior vice president of entertainment.
“Our electronics associates have been preparing for many weeks for the arrival of iPhone 3G,” he said.
Until now, the iPhone has only been available through Apple’s own stores, AT&T outlets and electronics chain Best Buy.
The Internet has been buzzing for weeks about an appearance by the iPhone in Wal-Mart stores, but many had been expecting the company to offer a four-gigabyte model at a cut-rate price, even as low as US$99.