Sprint Pulls $100 Rebate Offer for Palm Pre Buyers

A few hours after it posted a special $100 rebate for new customers using the Palm Pre smartphone, Sprint Nextel pulls the offer from its Website. Originally, Sprint offered first-time Pre buyers a discount and part of the deal required customers to transfer their telephone numbers from another wireless carrier to Sprint.

If you were looking forward to that $100 rebate from Sprint Nextel for buying a Palm Pre-forget it.

A few hours after posting a special $100 rebate for first-time buyers of the Palm Pre smartphone, Sprint pulled the special discount from its Website. A Sprint spokesperson told the Dow Jones News Service that the company had posted the offer in error.

Sprint originally posted the offer on Sept. 8. Several publications, including eWEEK.com, wrote stories about the offer before the wireless carrier pulled it later in the day.

The All Things Digital blog first reported Sprint's reversal. A Sprint official told the blog that the company would honor the agreement for customers who asked for the rebate before the advertisement was taken down Tuesday afternoon.

According to the original posting, the special deal for the Palm Pre would have run from Sept. 8 until Oct. 31. The $100 rebate was only for first-time buyers of the Pre smartphone and not for existing customers. In addition, the offer required customers to move their current telephone numbers from their current wireless carriers to the Sprint network.

This is the original announcement as posted on Sprint's Website before being taken down:

"Until October 10, 2009 you can get a $100 service credit when you move your number to a Palm Pre from Sprint and activate a new line of service with a two-year agreement. The $100 service credit will be applied to your Sprint account within three invoices. The service credit will not display in the shopping cart at checkout. This offer is available now but can't be combined with other Pre discounts, rebates or offers."

The offer would have reduced the cost of the Palm Pre from $199 to $99.

While the Palm Pre has brought mixed results for Sprint, the carrier is looking to attract new customers with other smartphones. On Oct. 11, Sprint plans to offers its first device based on the Google Android operating system. The HTC Hero smartphone is priced at $179.99 with rebates and a two-year contract.