A leaked internal memo shows that Best Buy plans to launch a nationwide iPad 2 promotion starting tomorrow, Sunday, April 17, according to a report by Engadget. The marketing push follows rumors that Apple had banned Best Buy from selling the iPad 2 due to a dispute over the big-box retailer’s handling of sales of the device.
According to the original Apple-Best Buy spat rumor, Best Buy was reportedly telling employees not to sell any more iPad 2 units after the stores had met their daily quota. Apple was reportedly not happy with this, since the highly sought-after device became difficult to purchase due to low supply.
Both Apple and Best Buy denied claims that the two companies were in dispute.
Then, on April 8, Best Buy released a statement to BGR, which stated that they were actively “fulfilling customer reservations [for iPad 2s] first,” but that “stores have been asked to temporarily hold non-reserved iPad 2 inventory for an upcoming promotion.”
The leaked memo seems to detail that promotion. According to the memo, which was given to Engadget from an anonymous source, “the iPad 2 will be featured on the front cover of the April 17 ad and because of this, the reserve order system will be turned back on on Sunday.”
The memo stipulates that “no rainchecks” will be provided to customers, except in Michigan and Ohio, where stores have a minimum of three units for each model. In those state, Best Buy’s Reserve Ticket System will be used to fulfill customer order, if the stores do not have the three unit minimum.
Chances are that three iPad 2 units won’t be nearly enough to satisfy tablet hungry customers, and Best Buy knows it, saying in the memo that “many store won’t be in the optimal inventory situation.” In those cases, the company will give the customer a reservation, which will enable them to pick up their iPad 2 once it’s in stock.
In the memo, Best Buy says that it will take iPad 2 reservations for “the entire week of the ad, possibly longer.” Best Buy employees will be allowed to purchase iPad 2s.
Apple’s online store is still listing two- to three-week wait times for iPad 2 orders. So if you’re thinking about purchasing the tablet, Sunday might be a good time to head to your local Best Buy.
Update: Apparently Sunday is iPad 2 day. According to 9to5Mac, Toys R’ Us will be added to the lucky list of retailers allowed to carry Apple’s second generation tablet. Customers can purchase both the 16GB and 32GB Wi-Fi only iPad 2 models there, starting tomorrow, April 17. The toy store will also sell Apple’s nifty Smart Covers.