Good morning white iPhoneers! I just had an epiphany, and I can't wait to share it with you. Would you like to have a black iPhone 4 when it comes out, then switch to a white one when it's available? I mean, if Apple offered this would you sign up? Yes? Yes! Ok. Here's how to pull it off.
Step 1. Pre-order a Black iPhone 4
Though this may seem like a concession, or giving up, it's not. Trust me and read on.
Step 2. Enjoy Your Black iPhone 4 Very Carefully
Get a felt bag AND a protective case. Put on the case, and keep the iPhone in the bag when you're not using it. They sell felt bags on eBay for smartphones generally, and they're usually quite cheap. And get an ugly, full coverage case, just for now. I did this with my 3GS for an entire year (without the ugly case) and it doesn't have a scratch on it, only some very minor wear that only just recently became visible. Your temporary black iPhone will have both body and screen safe from harm.
Use it. Enjoy it. But be CAREFUL with it. Have fun and wait for step 3 to become necessary.
Step 3. eBay Your Black iPhone 4
Now, you just paid $199.99 or $299.00 for a black iPhone 4 and your upgrade is spent. However, you have an ace in the hole. If you sell it, you're selling it WITHOUT A CONTRACT. That jacks the value of it up to $699.99 or $799.99 new. And if the iPhone is sold out, as it likely will be, yours will be one of the few on the market.
Wait until Apple announces the white iPhone 4 is available, and put your listing up 9 days before if you can. If you only have 5 days' notice, do a 3-day auction.
In all likelihood, Apple will notify the world they intend to put it up for pre-order too (see the Why's it Late? story further down the blog for my reasons). Then put it up without a Buy It Now, (you don't want someone scooping it up before your white iPhone 4 is in your hands), including the felt bag and the case to sweeten the deal. Start the listing at $50.00 below the actual price (649.99 or 749.99, it will bid up to the price you want, I'd be willing to bet anything. The lower cost draws attention to your auction).
Time the auction so it ends two days before you get your white one (see step 4 below). Play up why you're selling it, and then explain just why it's in such good condition! You might even make more than it's worth, if they're sold out when you list it. Imagine that. Use an iPhone 4 while you wait, get the white one when it comes out, and make a little cash! Sweet deal.
Step 4. Pre-order the White iPhone 4
It's probably best to do this from a retail outlet, because you don't want to have to put up a whole lot of money to buy it from the Apple store (your new white iPhone 4 will have to be purchased at full price). But if you can't pre-order from a retail outlet, or you can afford to temporarily front the money, use the Apple store (that's the safer road). If you put it on your credit card, you'll be able to pay it off in the same month, so no interest charges will be applied.
Step 5. Activate Your New White iPhone 4 and Ship off the Black One
When you get your new iPhone 4, wipe your old black one's memory, activate your new white iPhone, and ship off the old one the same day. If you pre-ordered from a retail outlet, use the proceeds from the sale of your black one to buy your white one. If not, pay off your credit card or Apple credit account with the proceeds. Now you've got your new white iPhone 4, at little to no extra cost (or even a profit), and you didn't have to wait to start having iPhone fun!
Things to Remember
1. Don't set your auction price too high, no matter how much more the other iPhone 4s are going for. Remember that you're not trying to flip your black one for a massive profit, you're just trying to pay for your white one with the proceeds. So don't get greedy! If all the other iPhones on eBay are selling for $1,000.00, and starting bidding at $900.00, you'll be set sell it fast. And that's the goal.
2. Spend some time on the auction. Give good descriptions, play up your sale, and put up a real picture. Don't forget to mention that you have all original packaging, that the phone is in perfect condition, and that you're including a case and a felt bag as part of the auction. If you can avoid unwrapping the cords for the new one, or using the headphones, do so! Talk about that in the auction!
3. There's some risk involved with this. You might not get all of your costs recovered. So if you can't afford or don't want to possibly spend $50.00 or so on an auction that doesn't bid up past the price you want, or shipping, or the cost of accessories, then don't try this. You could come out way ahead, but you might not. All this trick does is make getting both affordable in the worst-case scenario.
Also, if you're not familiar with eBay and Paypal, or are clumsy with your phones, you might not want to try this. If you drop your black temp phone, and it is damaged, this plan's out the window and you're stuck with it. And if you can't make eBay work and end up not selling your black one, you're out some serious dough. I'm not advocating that you try to execute this plan, I'm just tossing it out there as an option for the "gotta-have-it-now" set (of which I'm a card-carrying member).
If you do decide to do this, it's at your own risk. In other words, don't you dare try to sue me. :)
Cheers, white iPhoneers! I'll be back later with more white iPhone updates.