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Friday, April 08, 2011, 05:30 am PT (08:30 am ET)

Rumor: Best Buy's iPad 2 sales strategy gets it 'blacklisted' by Apple

Numerous rumors have claimed that Best Buy is in hot water with Apple over its alleged policy to stop iPad 2 sales once it meets its quota for the day, leaving the retailer "blacklisted" from further iPad sales.

Citing a source at Best Buy, CrunchGear reported this week that Best Buy was holding off on selling iPad 2 units it had in stock, telling customers they were sold out when, in reality, the stores had just reached their internal quota for that day. That strategy is rumored to have upset Apple, which is allegedly no longer allowing the retailer to sell the iPad 2.

"No less than (Apple Chief Operating Officer) Tim Cook is involved in this little snafu, and will be helping with the negotiations," the report said.

In addition, TUAW also received a tip that Apple "ordered a freeze on sales of the iPad 2 through Best Buy." The report also claimed that the retailer has pulled all stock except demo units.

Best Buy has been a partner in selling the iPad since the first-generation device launched last April. A year ago, Best Buy was the only non-Apple retailer that was allowed to sell the iPad, though other options such as Walmart and Target were added as the year went on.

Best Buy also has a unique partnership with Apple, as the electronics retailer commits a significant amount of floor space devoted specifically to Apple products in many of its stores. Best Buy began adding Apple boutiques to its stores in 2008.

In March, it was also rumored that Best Buy was considering giving the iPad to all of its on-the-floor sales associates at its 1,100 U.S. stores. It was said that employees would use devices such as the iPad to educate consumers and process purchases.