What can I say? I’m weak.
Seriously, the main reason I have an iPhone story to tell right now is the app store. We’re moving next month (yes, next month…more on that in another post) and there are iPhone apps (Bank of America, WordPress, Salesforce and others) that will make it possible for me to get done what I need to do in chaos without lugging around the laptop.
And let’s face it, it’s pretty cool.
So Thursday night, Eric and I decide to go for his & hers iPhones on Friday. He’ll pick one up in Manhattan at an AT&T Store, I’ll hit a local AT&T as we’re about 45 minutes away from an Apple Store.
Eric waited on line at a Wall Street area AT&T store for a little over 2 hours starting at 7 am. With only 50 or so in front of him, he thought he had a shot before he had to head to work. Notta chance. Meanwhile, I had to drop the girls off at camp so I couldn’t start shopping until 9:30 am. By then I faced long lines and the reality that the AT&T Stores I went to had no actual stock. I was waiting on line to place an order. Nah.
We had a babysitter coming that evening for a rare date night, so we head south for the Cherry Hill Mall thinking we’d try our luck at the Apple Store. We get there at around 7:30 pm and see a short line. As we get to it, an Apple Store employee comes out and says that they just sold out of every phone.
Saturday morning we get up early to check availability, and head for the Menlo Park Mall in Edison, NJ which has all 3 models in stock. We get there at around 9:30 am to see around 75 of our fellow iPhone fans on line in front of us. The Menlo Park Mall has an AT&T Store directly across from an Apple Store. The mall had 2 queues set up, one for each store. Eric waited on the Apple line, I waited on the AT&T line. After around 20 minutes, an AT&T employee came out and announced they had just 10 Black 16GB iPhones. Nothing else. He had customers count off. I was number 12, so I joined Eric on his line.
How long did the store take to process the 75 folks in front of us? 3 hours. At one point, an employee announced that they had a limited supply of 16 GB iPhones and had folks count off. The last 16 GB was going to go to the person in front of me. I stayed in line. Anything could go wrong with one of the purchases in front of me, so I decided to take my chances.
I have to say the Apple folks were wonderful. They came out to the line a lot to serve coffee and answer questions. At this point, Eric went off to keep the kids entertained. I spent the entire time talking to the folks around me and the time didn’t drag on nearly as much as it could have. About 30 minutes after Eric went off with the kids, an employee came out and happily announced that they had plenty of white 16 GB iPhones to get to my part of the line after all. Yah!
Once I walked in to the store at around 12:30 pm, the process to buy two white 16 GB iPhones was very smooth. No hang ups on activation at all and I was out 10-15 minutes later. The line outside the store still had at least 50-75 on it. The employee who worked with me told me that they were there until 2 am the night before. He said they only had to stop because the AT&T machines went down, and there were still people waiting at that point. They cut off the line when the store closed, so those folks had been waiting for at least 3-4 hours. Ugh. Can you imagine waiting on line until 2 am and not getting anything?
Was it worth it? So far, definitely. More in the next post.