Does Palm Pre-fer Best Buy?

Palm's (Nasdaq: PALM  ) unveiling of the forthcoming Pre smartphone and its highly functional webOS was a defining moment. What might make it better? An equally smart distribution deal.

There may be one. According to the rumormongers at the WebOS Arena blog, Best Buy (NYSE: BBY  ) will be an exclusive retailer of the Pre for its first 60 days on the market, along with Sprint Nextel (NYSE: S  ) , Palm's telco partner for the Pre, which will also carry the phones in its stores, WebOS Arena says.

Should we take heed? For its part, WebOS Arena cites a "credible source" within Best Buy for its story, and history supports the claim. Best Buy was the exclusive supplier of Samsung's Instinct when it reached market in June. Moreover, Best Buy was also the first retailer other than Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL  ) or AT&T (NYSE: T  ) to resell the iPhone.

Plus, it would make for smart business. Shoppers won't fully understand the Pre unless they're given the time and tutelage to play with the device. Best Buy's trained staffers should be able to provide that -- assuming that training is folded into a distribution deal.

Early talk is of the Pre being the iPhone killer. I'm not so sure of that. What I am sure of is that there's zero chance of the Pre assuming such a lofty perch without dynamite distribution. Best Buy would provide that.

You'd better be right, WebOS Arena. Investors are counting on your "credible source."

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Fool contributor Tim Beyers had stock and options positions in Apple at the time of publication. Check out Tim's portfolio holdings and Foolish writings, or connect with him on Twitter as @milehighfool. The Motley Fool is also on Twitter as @TheMotleyFool. Its disclosure policy is calling. Are you there?


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  • Report this Comment On January 16, 2009, at 5:00 PM, nazzyg wrote:

    With Circuit City gone, guess Best Buy is really the only choice around here anyway. :) http://www.SprintPre.net

  • Report this Comment On January 17, 2009, at 10:59 AM, stm121184 wrote:

    Best Buy did not have an exclusive on the Instinct for the first 60 days. It was released June 20, 2008, and all markets received shioments of it by June 19th. Nice to know there are a lot of "facts" in the Motley News.

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