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Apple Online Store Now Offering iPhone 3G for Direct Shipment to New AT&T Customers

Engadget reports that Apple's US online store has started taking orders for direct shipments of the iPhone 3G. Previously, the iPhone was available only in retail stores when purchased from Apple, although AT&T offered sales both in its own retail stores and through its online store.

The new distribution method is valid only for customers new to AT&T, while existing AT&T customers will have to pick up their iPhones at local Apple retail stores. New customers are taken through a series of screens in which they must submit their enter their billing address to allow AT&T to run a credit check, select their rate plan, and either reserve an iPhone for pickup at a local Apple store or complete the purchase and have the iPhone shipped directly to them.