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The Verizon Pre 2 was announced on October 19th and set to hit "in the coming months." Those months have rolled by with nary a Pre 2 on Big Red and now we're fast approaching HP's Think Beyond event where at least one and possibly two phones will be announced. Whether or not next week's announcements will make a Verizon release pointless is unclear.

Since then we've seen hints and heard whispers, including yesterday's spotting of the Verizon Palm Pre 2 on the CelleBrite system. Now we have the above image of the Palm Pre 2 showing up on Verizon's rebate form. Here's the curious thing: those rebates are going away completely for smartphones on Valentine's day, as our pals at Android Central discovered. Indeed, the above form is set for the period between January 10th and February 14th. Odd? Odd.

We are very tempted to conclude this: the Verizon Pre 2 should have been released by now and plans changed at the last minute. Perhaps they wanted to release it with a little more fanfare at their event on the 9th. Perhaps it's been scuttled altogether. Perhaps Verizon's notoriously stringent standards for handsets have kept the Pre 2 from release. Perhaps all those Android 4G phones distracted Verizon. Perhaps sunspots - we hate those things.

All we know for sure is that although the Pre 2 has been underwhelming to most, the promised Skype integration (remember that?) seemed pretty keen and given how difficult it's been to buy a webOS phone from a carrier at all lately, it's a disappointment that Palm and HP didn't release the Verizon Pre 2 in time for the holiday season.

The big question is: would it be a disappointment for Verizon and Palm and HP to release the Palm Pre 2 now? As with all things related to webOS these days, we're just going to have to wait until the 9th to find out for sure.