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Now that everyone has seen Palm’s new phone, the Pre, and wants one, the biggest question is pricing. Initially, it seemed that Palm planned to charge more than the $199 (and $299) that AT&T and Apple charge for the iPhone, since Palm’s chief executive Ed Colligan indicated it was a better device that could command a higher price tag. This was seemingly confirmed by a report a few days ago that the Pre may be $399 on Sprint’s network. But those numbers have since been clarified a bit further.

Palm is still finalizing pricing for the Pre, but is tentatively set on either $399 or $499 without a contract, says Mobile-review (Unwired View breaks it down in English). With a contract, those numbers are expected to fall to either $149 or $199 — which would put it at or below the iPhone in the United States (which requires a two-year contract with AT&T).

The report also suggests that Palm may be limited to an initial production run of 200,000 units due to a shortage of displays, but that the bulk will be ready for 2009’s holiday shopping season.

I still have yet to play with a Pre, but if it’s as slick as it looks in the videos, $149 may be a killer deal for the device.

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