The curiously well-informed Russian gentleman who spread the Pre=$399 rumor wants to clarify! He meant to say that it'll be $399 or $499, and $149 or $199 on contract. That's a pretty big clarification, guy.
The claim is as follows: With Sprint, Palm is considering two different price points to be decided based on the competitive landscape at the time of the Pre's summer '09 release—a part of the original report that has been revealed as true, pretty much—and will settle on either a $399/$149 or $499/$199 unsubsidized/subsidized pricing.
Another little interesting nugget? The initial production run will sit at around 200,000, a low number necessitated by the limited manufacturing capacity for the Pre's screen hardware.
The $149/$199 figure is obviously the story here, as the on-contract price the most important, referenced one for any handset. But don't ignore the $399 price either—that's less than many no-contract BlackBerrys and WinMo phones, and the same price as the G1 developer model. All this sounds like it could conceivably be true, and if Palm wants their new handset to make any waves (or more urgently, save their entire company) then they should make it true. [Mobile Review via Unwired View—Thanks, Stasys!]