EDIT: This rumor has been confirmed.
If you are a hard-core PhoneDogger, or have stumbled onto a few select posts, you know that I'm fond of whining about mail-in rebates. In the past, my experience is that they're used simply to get you in the door and that most companies will find any loophole they can to avoid paying up.
I had one company claim to have not received a paper that I had a fax confirmation for. After jumping through the hoops, they said the promotion was over. Promotion. Well, no need to rehash those complaints here, but I just wanted to set this post up properly.
Sprint is selling Hero on October 11th at $179.99 after mail-in rebate. But if quickpwn is correct, you can skip that mess. I cannot independently verify this at the time of posting, but the site is reporting that Best Buy will sell the handset for $179 outright. I want so much to believe. Searching Best Buy for the SKU brings up nothing.