Best Buy goes installment-only on Apple's iPhone 8 & X after backlash over $100 premium

Posted:
in iPhone
Best Buy has removed options to buy an iPhone 8 or X upfront from its U.S. website, which had previously generated controversy since the retailer was charging a $100 premium on top of Apple's normal retail prices.




"Although there was clearly demand for the unactivated iPhone X, selling it that way cost more money, causing some confusion with our customers and noise in the media," Best Buy spokeswoman Danielle Schumann told Bloomberg on Tuesday. "That's why we decided a few days ago to only sell the phone the traditional way, through installment billing plans."

The retailer's listings for the iPhone 8 and iPhone X now only show options to pay in installments through AT&T, Sprint, or Verizon.

Best Buy typically receives payments from carriers when it sells phones on their networks, but loses that money when it sells unactivated hardware. The retailer was presumably hoping that demand would make a premium acceptable.

The company's prior approach pushed the base price of an iPhone 8 up to $799, and the iPhone X up to $1,099.99. A 256-gigabyte iPhone X was hiked to $1,249.99, just $50 short of what Apple charges for a 13-inch MacBook Pro.

Launch-day preorders for the iPhone X have been exhausted, but it may still be possible to get one on Nov. 3 by camping out in front of an Apple store or another retailer selling the product.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 19
    It wasn't just the iPhone X and 8 that Best Buy did the $100 mark up for. They also did that with the 7 on pre-orders. I know because I did that. I ordered the 7 with the special black finish which too longer to come out. After the initial pre-order rush, the price went back to normal. Since I was waiting for mine, I got it at normal price.
    edited October 2017
  • Reply 2 of 19
    Basically, regular markup on them wasn't enough, and Best Buy thought they'd tack on a little extra for those desperate enough to buy from them.
  • Reply 3 of 19
    rhinotuff said:
    Basically, regular markup on them wasn't enough, and Best Buy thought they'd tack on a little extra for those desperate enough to buy from them.
    Considering what the iPhone X is being offered at on eBay, Best Buy's $100 premium is a steal.
  • Reply 4 of 19
    Free market capitalism at work. 
  • Reply 5 of 19
    "Best Buy" LOL
    boxcatcherGeorgeBMac
  • Reply 6 of 19
    jd_in_sbjd_in_sb Posts: 1,483member
    “Noise in the media” is a lame response. They should have said “we screwed up by trying to gouge the public, and we learned our lesson.” Best Buy isn’t trying to be competitive. The exact same $10 iPad case I bought for my dad on Amazon last month was selling for $49 at Best Buy. Their Pacific Sales division (refrigerators, washers, stoves) is doing very well and will likely be all that’s left of the company in a few years. 
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 7 of 19
    freerangefreerange Posts: 1,584member
    rhinotuff said:
    Basically, regular markup on them wasn't enough, and Best Buy thought they'd tack on a little extra for those desperate enough to buy from them.
    Considering what the iPhone X is being offered at on eBay, Best Buy's $100 premium is a steal.
    WTF - tacking on 100 by a retailer is totally fk’d. Don’t defend these asshats
    macxpress
  • Reply 8 of 19
    freerangefreerange Posts: 1,584member
    Free market capitalism at work. 
    More like stupidity at work.
  • Reply 9 of 19
    calicali Posts: 3,495member
    Honestly it’s a high demand item. I don’t see what’s wrong. I’m sure it sold out at that price too.
  • Reply 10 of 19
    I’m shocked. Shocked! People are still shopping at Best Buy in 2017? You’re taking the piss.
  • Reply 11 of 19
    "Although there was clearly demand for the unactivated iPhone X, selling it that way made far less profit,"

    there, fixed that for you "best buy".
  • Reply 12 of 19
    Since when was a 3rd party retailer selling a phone on contract the traditional way? Surely a mobile operator selling it on contract is traditional for them and selling an unlocked/sim-free device at rrp is traditional for all others? It's just introducing another middle-man who will surely take a slice and make it cost more overall.
  • Reply 13 of 19
    Does anybody shop there anymore?
  • Reply 14 of 19
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,730member
    Does anybody shop there anymore?
    I go there sometimes to look at things so I can see it in person and play with it...and then go to Amazon to buy them. I did buy my LG 4K TV there only because I don't trust UPS or FedEx to get it to my house without smashing the hell out of it. Other than something like a TV, I wouldn't buy anything from them. 

    I laugh when the first thing someone says is, I went to BestBuy to have my laptop looked at...
    edited November 2017
  • Reply 15 of 19
    It’s amazing how many people don’t understand what’s really happening here. Best Buy only makes money on the phones they sell when they’re financed through a carrier’s plan attached to a plan. When someone buys a phone unlocked and unactivated, Best Buy doesn’t get paid. The stock they carried and employees they paid are not covered by the sale of the phone since they get no income from the phone sale. Nope, none. $100 to cover their expenses is not much for the risk they took.

    What’s commonly also ignored is that every phone manufacturer (especially Apple) has historically also charged a comparable premium for buying unlocked phones not attached to a customer’s carrier account. This is business as usual. Best Buy was just doing what the Apple Store has always done.
  • Reply 16 of 19
    toddzrxtoddzrx Posts: 194member
    jd_in_sb said:
    “Noise in the media” is a lame response. They should have said “we screwed up by trying to gouge the public, and we learned our lesson.” Best Buy isn’t trying to be competitive. The exact same $10 iPad case I bought for my dad on Amazon last month was selling for $49 at Best Buy. Their Pacific Sales division (refrigerators, washers, stoves) is doing very well and will likely be all that’s left of the company in a few years. 

    freerange said:
    rhinotuff said:
    Basically, regular markup on them wasn't enough, and Best Buy thought they'd tack on a little extra for those desperate enough to buy from them.
    Considering what the iPhone X is being offered at on eBay, Best Buy's $100 premium is a steal.
    WTF - tacking on 100 by a retailer is totally fk’d. Don’t defend these asshats
    I suppose you guys were forced to enter a Best Buy store and buy a X at the higher price?  Quit your whining.  I suppose you throw a similar tantrum when grocery stores sell Post cereal for more than the other guy?
  • Reply 17 of 19
    freerange said:
    rhinotuff said:
    Basically, regular markup on them wasn't enough, and Best Buy thought they'd tack on a little extra for those desperate enough to buy from them.
    Considering what the iPhone X is being offered at on eBay, Best Buy's $100 premium is a steal.
    WTF - tacking on 100 by a retailer is totally fk’d. Don’t defend these asshats
    Do you think before hitting "post comment" button? You do realize BB gets no deal from Apple. Carriers make money by you buying their service. How is BB supposed to make money on non-carrier sales if they don't tack on a little mark-up? How about this...let's say you are lucky enough to buy a brand new, hot off the press, totally in-demand iPhone X for $1000. Would you put it up for sale on Craigslist for $1000 or would you mark it up and try to make a profit. Understand now?
  • Reply 18 of 19
    What is Best Buy?
  • Reply 19 of 19
    A retailer is entitled to charge whatever mark-up they like on a product they sell.  To be constrained by the manufacturer is called price-fixing, and is illegal.
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