Apple is apparently pushing to increase sales of the already popular iPhone 3G. Best Buy has reportedly inked a deal to sell the iPhone 3G starting September 7 in 970 of its US stores and 16 Best Buy Mobile outlets. The announcement comes on the heels of Best Buy’s joint venture with European mobile phone retailer, and the UK’s exclusive third-party iPhone retailer, Carphone Warehouse.
Best Buy is expected to see the iPhone 3G boosting sales figures by upwards of 2% for stores open at least 14 months, according to Banc of America Securities analyst David Strasser. Apple is estimated to sell an additional million iPhone 3G handsets in the third and fourth quarter of 2008. That would give Apple’s estimated 3 million iPhone 3G sales numbers a significant boost.
“We think this underscores Best Buy’s strong working relationship with Apple and provides even greater differentiation from peers,” said Standard & Poor’s Equity analyst Michael Souers. “In addition, we believe the iPhone will help grow traffic and sales in this year’s holiday season, which could be weak overall on slowed consumer spending.”
Apple will need to seriously increase its supply of iPhone 3G units if it hopes to cash in on the Best Buy sales channel. Shortages and long-lines have plagued iPhone 3G hopefuls since the device’s launch, and with dozens of additional countries expected to start offering the device in coming months, Apple’s supply chain could be stretched thin.
Still, if you’re still waiting for a chance to get in on the iPhone 3G craze, September 7 might be a good time to head to Best Buy.