updated 03:20 pm EDT, Fri May 22, 2009
ATT iPhone stock dwindles
AT&T is reportedly selling out of its iPhone 3G inventories and does not plan on restocking, according to AppleInsider. The actions add more evidence to speculation that the company is preparing to launch the next-generation device at the upcoming WWDC. Earlier reports suggest a number of other carriers are following similar strategies, allowing subscribers to pair the iPhone with a cheaper data plan or discounting the device itself.
"I just got off the phone with AT&T regarding the death of my wife's iPhone and the customer service rep informed me they are no longer selling new iPhone 3G," claims one customer, although the carrier representative did offer refurbished models as an alternative.
When asked to explain the limited availability, another representative said he did not have additional details but he was told not to expect the iPhone 3G inventory to be restocked.
A leaked e-mail sent internally to Vodafone staff suggests the 16GB iPhone has been marked "end of life" by the regional supplier, Brightpoint, in Australia. The device allegedly only has a few weeks worth of inventory left, suggesting an updated device may ship as early as late June or early July.
Despite the 3G unveiling at Apple's WWDC last year, the timing for an upcoming launch remains uncertain. Many reports suggest the company will launch a new phone on June 8th, although a number of analysts expect a surprise event scheduled to follow the conference. A dedicated media event could be staged in late June or early July, around the time Steve Jobs is expected to complete his leave of absence.