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White iPhone 4 could finally be available before end of February

Apple's blanc iPhone has been long delayed since being unveiled last year, but product listings from Best Buy and Vodafone hint that it will soon be on sale.

Apple's long-delayed white iPhone 4 could be on sale on 27 February in the US, judging by a screenshot published on MacRumors. The image appears to show the device's listing in retailer Best Buy's inventory database.

Bully for the Americans, eh? But wait! Separately, Engadget turned up its own screenshot of Vodafone Germany's inventory system, which lists 16GB and 32GB models of the white iPhone 4, although without a specific release date.

The clear indication is that an on-sale date for the device is imminent. It's taken a long time coming, too. The white and black iPhone 4s were unveiled together in June last year, with white models available for journalists to play with in the media zone following chief executive Steve Jobs' WWDC keynote speech.

But, in July, Apple announced a delay for the white iPhone 4, due to the device being "more challenging to manufacture than we originally expected". At the time, Apple promised a release before the end of 2010.

Then, in October, more reports suggested that the white model would be delayed until this year. They turned out to be correct, with no sign of the device before Christmas.

By November, a lucrative black market (or should that be white market?) was emerging in kits to turn black iPhone 4s into white ones. One teenage New Yorker was even threatened with jail for selling such conversion kits.

Now it seems the real deal could finally be making its way onto shelves, although we're wary of cracking the piggybank open based purely on these screenshots.

With speculation continuing to swirl about an iPad 2 announcement in February, that event would be the ideal opportunity to confirm the status of the white iPhone 4.