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