New iPhone 3GS or no, Palm's new device, the Palm Pre, set sales records for Sprint last weekend. By late Sunday, the Palm Pre had broken previous sales records (first day and first weekend) for a Sprint device.
Here's what Dan Hesse, Sprint President and CEO trumpeted (I'm sure happily) in a press release
"Sprint is a very different company than it was 12 months ago. Palm Pre is the coming out party for the new Sprint. It is the perfect device that highlights all of the positive changes in our company, including our revolutionary Ready Now retail store experience, greatly improved customer care, unmatched value pricing plans and America's most dependable 3G network.”
A personal interest story of note in the press release: the Palm Pre nearly screwed up a wedding.
On Saturday at 7 a.m., Theodore was 14th in line at an Atlanta-area Sprint store, fidgeting for his new Pre. His wedding was scheduled for 8 a.m. As much as Theodore wanted Pre, he wanted his bride, Anita, to see him at the altar at the appointed time. At 7:45, he abandoned his wait and left his line-number and credit card information with a Sprint store employee, asking that he “hold the 14th phone for me.” The Sprint store employee obliged. Minutes after the recessional, the newlyweds returned to pick up their phone, spending the first minutes of married life with a Ready Now consultant who walked the happy couple through Pre’s setup and features. The new Mrs. Travis later revealed that her reaction was “You did what?” to her husband spending the hour before their wedding waiting for a phone, but later admitted, “I guess I kind of understand now.”
Personally, he's lucky the Sprint employee obliged. And analysts seemed to agree it was a blockbuster weekend for Sprint and Palm, with Michael Walkley, a senior research analyst with Piper Jaffray putting sales at about 100,000 phones. Meanwhile, Jonathan Atkin, an analyst with RBC Capital Markets, put total sales tallies at slightly less than 100,000.
Now that the iPhone 3GS has been announced --- and will, in fact, launch on June 19th --- how will the Palm Pre's sales fare? Time will tell.