NEW YORK (TheStreet) - Best Buy (BBY), Target (TGT) and Walmart (WMT) are all racing to get consumers' mobile business as the three retailers jockey for position on which store has the best deal for Apple (AAPL) iPhones.
Target is running a special for the month of June, where guests can trade in a used working smartphone and receive a $25 Target gift card plus the value of the phone to put towards the purchase of an iPhone 5c or 5s.
Target is currently selling the iPhone 5c 16GB for $29.99 (regularly $99.99) and the iPhone 5s 16GB for $119.99 (regularly $199.99). Target says the pricing is good through June 14, with new two-year contracts via AT&T (T), Verizon (VZ) or Sprint (S).
Not to forget Google (GOOG) Android lovers, now through Saturday, June 7, Target is enticing customers to trade in their older Samsung Galaxy models for the Galaxy S5. According to its Web site, Target customers who trade in their Samsung smartphones will receive a $50 gift card plus the value of the phone to put towards the purchase of Samsung's latest model, the Galaxy S5. Target is selling the Galaxy S5 for $169.99 with contracts via AT&T or Verizon.
Walmart is also trying to rev up its tech gadget business, particularly in time for Father's Day. Now through June 7, Walmart is selling the Apple iPad with Retina Display 16GB with Wi-Fi for $399. Customers will also receive a $100 Walmart gift card with purchase. Walmart is offering $50 gift cards to customers who purchase an iPhone 5s or 5c, which the retailer is selling for $149 and $49, respectively. Additionally, now through June 15, Walmart is offering discounts on older model Samsung Galaxy phones. The Galaxy S4 price is reduced by $100 to $499. The Galaxy S3 price is reduced by $50 to $299.
- $25 Gift card on Straight Talk $99 Samsung Galaxy Centura Smartphone
- $50 Gift card on Straight Talk $149 Samsung Galaxy Ace Smartphone
- $50 Gift Card for Wireless Contract
- Good for all Samsung and Apple Smartphones (excludes iPhone 4s)
As with other retailers, Walmart is also trying to boost its trade-in business. Walmart is offering customers to trade in their iPhone for a newer model up to $300 of in-store credit.
Following Best Buy's Memorial Day sale where it allowed customers to trade in any working smartphone to purchase an iPhone 5s 16GB for free, the electronics chain is continuing deals. For instance, the iPhone 5s 16GB is selling for $99.99 when users agree to a new two-year contract on AT&T (trade in a working older model iPhone to get the upgraded device essentially for free). Best Buy is also selling the larger gigabyte iPhones roughly $100 cheaper than at-retail price (when agreeing to new two-year contracts via AT&T, Verizon or Sprint).
Retailers are ramping up their trade-in deals as Apple is rumored to be launching the next generation iPhone as early as August. Best Buy said last month that absent any major product launches in consumer electronics and mobile phones its comparable sales will be negative for its fiscal second and third quarters.
Not to be forgotten, T-Mobile (TMUS) is offering $100 off select popular tablets for Father's Day and graduation, including the new Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1-2014 Edition, available today at participating T-Mobile stores. For a limited time, T-Mobile is promoting the tablet for $0 down (plus 24 monthly payments of $25 on T-Mobile's Equipment Installment Plan). T-Mobile is also bringing Alcatel OneTouch Pop 7 - an Android tablet with 7" display selling for just $168.
T-Mobile is promoting its Tablet Freedom program, where all tablets can get up to 200 MB of free high-speed data for life, and through the end of 2014, customers can get nearly 1.2 GB of free 4G LTE data every month through T-Mobile.
"We've more than quadrupled our tablet line-up over the last year, and we're just getting started," said Mike Sievert, Chief Marketing Officer for T-Mobile. "Go to any of the old carriers, and you could pay more for your tablet or get stuck with long-term service contracts and overages. Only T-Mobile gives you a selection of the latest iOS and Android tablets with no annual service contract, no limits while on our network, no overages, with the world as your network in 100+ countries at no extra cost- and 200 MB free data for life."
--Written by Laurie Kulikowski in New York.