The Pre Will Indeed Launch Days Before A Likely iPhone Buzz Saw

buzz_sawThe Palm Pre’s official launch date is set to be unveiled tomorrow in the Wall Street Journal. But it looks like the New York Times may have one-upped its rival with a story today giving a launch window for the device. While it doesn’t give an exact date, NYT reports that Sprint will be released in the first week of June, citing people briefed with the company’s plans.

And the story goes on to say that Apple could launch a new iPhone on June 8 (the WWDC keynote), which would be “just a few days” after the Pre’s launch. While earlier rumors had the device launching on June 7, the day before WWDC, newer reports have suggested the date could be June 5 — that seems more in line with the “few days” statement, though it’s possible NYT doesn’t know the exact date.

Either way, the Pre’s launch hype looks likely to run into a shiny buzz saw that is the iPhone. And while a spokesperson for Palm tells the Times that the Pre isn’t a “bet-the-company device,” given the amount of money the company is losing, there’s a wide belief that if the device is not a success, Palm will be in very serious trouble. Palm is also working on a second, smaller device that will run its new webOS, we learned a few weeks ago. But that device is unlikely before the Fall or late 2009.

The other big variable still unknown about the Pre is its pricing. It seems likely that it will be around the $199 that the iPhone is after subsidy, but the details of a recent survey suggest that Palm thinks the Pre is worth $542.01, which is ludicrous.