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G&E has just received exclusive information that some channels may get the HTC EVO 4G LTE as early as May 13, while some national third part retailers like Best Buy or Wirefly have already been shipped the device. This is according to an internal Sprint document, which we can't show you in order to protect our tipster.

More specifically, the document indicates that retail stores and Sprint dealers should start receiving shipments on May 13, and "direct ship" customers – those who preordered on Sprint's site – will receive the device by May 18.

If this turns out to be true, this would explain why some third party retailers like Best Buy are estimating delivery dates as early as this week. It's unclear from the information we've got whether or not they're actually authorized to do this, or whether this is an error that Sprint will soon force them to correct. In any case, we'll keep our eye on this and let you know if anything changes. But in the meantime, it seems ever more likely that devices will indeed start appearing on doorsteps much sooner than originally thought.

Update: And the plot thickens: our tipster is now saying that a contact in Best Buy's corporate office claims the device won't ship until May 18, regardless of the dates given in the order. At this point, I'd say it's best to take everything with a grain of salt, especially since Best Buy has yet to clarify anything.

Thanks, anonymous!