Best Buy to sell iPhones soon

The Apple Store and AT&T stores soon won't be the only places you can stand in line to buy an iPhone: Best Buy, the nation's largest electronics retailer, is joining the fray.

Best Buy bby is the first outsider retailer to win the plum iPhone prize; it will begin sales on Sept. 7 in its 970 stores.

Apple aapl reintroduced the iPhone in July and says it has sold over 1 million of the second-generation phones. Analyst Charles Wolf of Needham & Co. thinks the number is closer to 3 million.

Apple has had trouble meeting demand. The new phone comes in two models costing $199 and $299 with a two-year AT&T t contract. Long lines have formed at many stores, and stock often still sells out early in the day.

Apple declined to discuss the supply issue. "We continue to ship iPhones daily," Apple spokeswoman Natalie Kerris says.

Shawn Score, president of Best Buy's mobile division, says, "We think we'll have a good supply for our customers."

Analyst Wolf says he believes that Apple is catching up with demand. "Supply is coming on board."

Best Buy says it has a national exclusive on the iPhone (outside of Apple and AT&T stores) through Christmas. The retailer has Apple Macintosh sections at 600 of its stores.

Adding to in-store customer waiting time is a new, longer procedure to activate the iPhone that has made the buying process much longer.

Score says that's an industry issue. "It takes 30 minutes to an hour for every carrier," he says, adding that he hopes to speed along the process in the next year.

To coincide with the iPhone launch, Apple also introduced more software applications at its "App Store."

As of Tuesday, Apple had over 1,000 applications available, up from 550 at launch.

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