Google Pixel – How Best Buy Saved Me $800+


I decided yesterday that I wanted a new phone. I haven’t had many new phones since I got out of the mobile tech review game back in 2012 and the Nextbit Robin is getting stale. I initially focused on the One Plus 3T and I actually ordered one, but quickly canceled the order. I wanted to make sure there wasn’t something I wanted more before pulling the trigger. To be honest, I am nervous about the 3T’s camera. The specs are awesome, but some real life usage tests I studied didn’t impress me. The camera is one of the main features I am focusing on this time and the camera that stood out the most is the Google Pixel so I started looking closer at the Pixel.

I am an AT&T customer, so started out looking at the Google Store for the “unlocked” version. The Google Store had the black 32gb model for $649. I can handle that but the wait time was 4-6 weeks and I am not one for waiting. I am very impulsive as many people probably remember in my Aximsite/Mobilitysite days. Update: When I checked this morning, the models I was looking at that showed 4-6 weeks yesterday now show out of stock.

Next up, Ebay. No go there either. All I could find was price gouging and used Pixels at the same price point as new phones. Pass.

Now I started to research the Verizon model and read that the phone sold at Verizon and Best Buy was the same phone you get from Google directly, but with an encrypted Verizon boot-loader and a little bloatware. I can handle that as well. I was sure I could get it working the way I wanted easily. I called a couple random stores around my area since the store in my town showed no Pixel stock. Both stores and the online chat, which were very aggressive, said that they could not sell me a Google Pixel without a contract. Verizon’s cash price is $649.99 and last night, I was more than happy to drive an hour to pay that, but they won’t sell me one.

My final stop was Best Buy

After talking with the Verizon folks on the phone, I didn’t want to drive to Best Buy just to have them tell me they couldn’t sell to me without a Verizon contract so I gave my local store a call. The main store was out of all models but they told me that the Best Buy Mobile in the mall had the black 32gb model in stock. I called this location and asked the sale rep that answered if they had them in stock. She said they did have the Pixel in stock, but not the XL version. That’s fine, I just want the 5″ black version. I then asked her if I could buy without a contract at the cash price and she said I could.

I was ready to head down to Best Buy Mobile and throw my money at them but I asked one last question, “How much is the total cost?” She replied, “792”. I asked her if that was the total cost with tax and she said it was the cost before tax. I was floored. I said, “Wait, the phone is a $649 phone, why is it $792?” She said it was only $649 if you bought it with the $27/mo financing. This doesn’t make sense I told her and she went on about subsidies and all. I thanked her for her time and told her that I wasn’t going to pay over $800 for a $649 phone.

I hung up and took a look at the Best Buy website and she was almost right, $27/mo or $749.99 (not $792). Either way, that’s ridiculous to up-charge $100 for the phone over the Google Store and Verizon price.

Thanks Best Buy! You saved me over $800 last night!

On a serious note, I would love to know why they are charging $100 extra.

I decided to stick with my NextBit Robin for a little longer.

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