RE: Still confused
Essentially, I think you are right . If you want to buy something now, you can only buy stuff that works in Ch69. If you want something that's legal to use in a few years time, then it has to work in Ch38 but it won't be legal to use now.
So you either accept that you have to scrap stuff in a couple of years because it's illegal to use and has no resale value, or buy stuff that can be converted during the pitifully small window. That might be as simple as changing a crystal (still not a DIY job for most people), or it may require more work which means an awful lot of conversion work and busy suppliers in that small window that will be allowed.
I'd imagine any astute manufacturer would have come up with a model that's use-configurable - but that probably carries a premium.
What is inexcusable is the short timescale allowed for parallel running of the two bands. It effectively makes any purchases a "distress purchase" with very limited scope for shopping around and looking for bargains at a time when lots of other poeple will also be doing the same. The only winners here will be vendors of new kit, and people providing a conversion service to convert older kit (where possible) to the new band.
I expect that in practice, a great many casual users will simply ignore the change and carry on - Ch 69 isn't going to get empty very fast.