Apple Retail Stores have begun matching the price drop on the iPhone 4S that retailers like Sprint and Radio Shack have begun offering. The drop was tipped to Macrumors and confirmed by The Verge.

The price drop, up to $49.01 on the iPhone 4S, brings the models down to the prices that have been seen advertised at Best Buy and other retailers. Apple is only matching these prices in stores, not online.

This is not an extremely common policy for Apple, which typically offers its devices at the retail price it sets, regardless of carrier promotions.

Sprint began offering the iPhone 4S starting at $149 earlier this week, and began waiving the $36 activation fee as well.  This brings the iPhone 4S down to the following prices:

  • 16GB – $149.99
  • 32GB – $249.99
  • 64GB – $349.99

RadioShack began offering the iPhone 4S for the same price via an in-store promotion back in May. Expect to see more retailers join the price-drop party as Apple’s usual fall iPhone event nears.