OK, so here's what I did. I needed to buy two Bolds, both unlocked (family members always travelling). So I asked a friend in Toronto to buy the unlocked Bold for me and ship it to the U.S. Cost was C$650 plus S&H. I went to an AT&T authorized retailer in midtown and he set this one up for me yesterday. It works like a DREAM!!! Email, internet, phone, the works. Even though the Bold doesn't officially release in the U.S. until Oct 2nd, all the dealers have already been trained on the device and they know all the settings and configurations (which are apparently new for the Bold).
Now here's where I'm kicking myself. The dealers told me that if I had waited till Oct 2nd, I could have bought the Bold for $399 in NY with a $100 rebate PLUS they can unlock it for an additional $40. So your net price will be only $340 once you get the rebate back. Waaaah!
So I overpaid for the first Bold but am definitely getting the second one through these guys. $340 and unlocked - how can you beat that?
So I have two pieces of advice to anyone who cares. First, wait till Oct 2nd to buy the Bold. Second, buy it from an authorized dealer, NOT AT&T themselves. They will not agree to unlock it for you (why should they?) Lots of authorized dealers will unlock it for a fee if you've already bought the unit from them. I really wish I had known this before I got the Bold from Canada. I only talked to the AT&T guys earlier and so was under the impression that their phones could not be unlocked. Now I know better...