Best Buy announced Monday that it will be an authorized participant in Apple's iPhone 4 pre-launch on Tuesday, in which customers can visit one of its retail locations to reserve one of the new handsets for pickup the following week.
Wal-Mart's move to overhaul the electronics departments in many of its retail stores with Apple-designated shopping areas is being seen as a sign that the mega-retailer is making a pitch to eventually carry Apple's line of Mac personal computers.
Adding a bit more confirmation to what is widely presumed, a few Wal-Malt stores have jumped the gun and are starting to advertise availability of Apple's iPhone 3G ahead of an official roll-out planned for later this month.
Research firms and investment banks are welcoming a move that would see Wal-Mart carry the iPhone later this year, but warn that a special $99 model would stand in contrast to the company's proven strategy while also presenting unnecessary risk.
In addition to new notebooks on Tuesday, Apple announced that the latest market research data from NPD indicates that the iTunes Store recently surpassed Best Buy to become the number two music retailer in the US, behind only Wal-Mart.