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Want an iPhone? Get in line

We’re just 10 days from the official launch of the iPhone, and people are getting more and more amped about it. Yeah, there was that whole drawback of the touchscreen keyboard (which we know we’d be terrible at using), but other than that, this looks like the phone messiah we’ve all been waiting for. And for just $500 ($600 if you want the 8 GB model) and a contract (or service extension), it can be yours in all its glory.

That is, if you can manage to get your hands on one.

You know those friendly, third-party franchises that always seem to be able to cut you a deal where a corporate store can’t (and this applies for all the major carriers)? Yeah, they won’t have an iPhone to sell you on the 29th. Why?

Some of them — heaven forbid — wouldn’t guarantee that they wouldn’t offer a discount on the uber-device. Anyone who has shopped for a deal on an iPod knows that Apple is super strict when it comes to discounts (we got an open-box one for $75 less than a spankin’ new one, and consider ourselves the victors).

So now the iPhone will only be available in AT&T corporate stores and in Apple Stores. We recently spoke to an AT&T official about the manner, who requested anonymity”

“We big company. You pay us money. We no give you discount. We be rich! Ha ha ha!”*

The third party stores aren’t just going to lay down, though. They know that they’re still going to get a ton of customers around the 29th looking for the iPhone. Their plan? Offer large discounts on other high-end phones. What’s that, you say? They’re creating more business for themselves while benefitting the consumer? What a novel concept.

*Obviously not a real quote

[ZDNet] [The Unofficial Apple Weblog]