Apple Matches iPhone Price Cuts as iPhone 5 Looms

With expectations rising over the upcoming debut of Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) next generation iPhone, widely expected to launch next month, prices for existing iPhones are falling.

Earlier this week, Sprint (NYSE:S) cut its price — with a two year contract — for the iPhone 4S to $150, a 25% drop. Now, Apple is moving to match similar price cuts at major retailers, MacRumors notes.

Cupertino’s acknowledgement of the price declines for current iPhone models is interpreted by analysts as evidence that the much-anticipated launch of a new iPhone is rapidly approaching. It also likely means that consumers are holding off purchasing an iPhone while they wait for the new model to appear. Steeper discounts on existing models should appear after the next iPhone launches.

The new pricing isn’t being advertised yet and will be offered only to consumers who specifically request price matching at bricks-and-mortar Apple Stores. Apple will limit price matches to leading retailers including Best Buy (NYSE:BBY) and Target (NYSE:TGT), as well as wireless carriers like AT&T (NYSE:T) and Verizon (NYSE:VZ).

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