Sprint store requires our shopper to buy iPhone 5 accessories—or no sale

Consumer Reports News: September 21, 2012 12:08 PM

This morning, a Consumer Reports shopper encountered an unexpected hurdle when shopping for an Apple iPhone 5: The local Sprint store told him that in order to buy the phone, he had to buy an accessories bundle along with it.

He was offered (read: forced to buy) a choice of six bundles at different price levels, starting at $84 and going up to $698; each price reflects a 20 percent discount. In the lowest-priced bundle, which our shopper bought, is a commuter case, screen protector, and dual car charger (pictured).

We haven't yet heard reports of other stores requiring extra purchases along with iPhone 5s. Have any other shoppers out there encountered this?

Although we can't disclose where we shop, we reached out to Sprint about what happened this morning, and received this reply from a representative: "That is not a Sprint corporate policy (at all!) but if the store was an indirect dealer (with or without Sprint branding) they can do their own thing."

Follow all our iPhone 5 coverage at ConsumerReports.org.

Carol Mangis

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