iPhone Launch Day

Before yesterday gets too far away from me, I should share my experience of getting my very own iPhone. Knowing that the Apple Store was closing at 2pm, I planned to be at Barton Creek Square a little before then to “check out the scene”. Being as that Barton Creek Square was allowing the line to start at 9am on Launch Day, I suspected about 100 people by the time I got there at 2pm but really, the line really wasn’t that long.

When I got to the mall a bit before 2, I made a trip through the Apple Store to see how empty it was (and boy, was it!), talked to a friend of my sister’s in there and decided it was time to go out to the car to get my line supplies (my backpack – packed with a book, my Dell laptop, some snacks and a small pillow – and my folding chair) and find my place in line. As soon as I setup, a man down a few people in front of me informed me that I was around #78 (although I still think I was closer to #90). He was quite a bit more excited than even I was. Within a few minutes after I had arrived and set up, about 10 more people came and got in line as well. Although I didn’t learn anyone’s names (it just didn’t seem necessary), I got to talking to the guy directly in front of me and the two guys behind me. The guy right behind me in line is a software developer and we had fun teasing the guy behind him who really didn’t know a whole lot about what he was about to plunge big bucks into. He kept asking questions that had been answered by the “getting ready” videos supplied by Apple and the software developer and I kept reciting lines from the videos when answering him. Excited guy would come along and play our games as well, periodically. Good times.

When we got close to 5pm, I noted that the first iPhones were to go on sale on the East coast and by that, in the world. It made my heart rush a bit. At 5:30, they must have removed the black paper from the windows to show off the count down clocks because everyone started packing up their little “camp sites” and the line condensed drastically. When we were down to the 10 seconds to go, everyone close enough to see those count down clocks counted down with them. People downstairs thought the mall was going to explode or something!

When they re-opened the store, they let people in groups of 20. As about 15 would leave, they’d let the next 20 in. Turned out, in the group of 20 I’d be going in with, I was #20. And the Apple Employee informed me of this by simply saying “You’re the last one”. The people behind me were starting to get a little testy (thinking I was the last one to get an iPhone, maybe) until they realized that I was to be the last on of the next group to enter the store.

So, I got in the store and had to wait a bit longer but before I knew it, Chris was telling me to go see Anthony (I know Chris but just met Anthony…I think it was Anthony) to get my phone. I think I skipped all the way to the cash register. I got my 8 gig, paid my money, took a few more pictures and made my way out the store. I’ve never had so many people congratulate me on a new piece of technology before!

Here’s some pics of my day:

“iLine” when I arrived

When the store closed, they blacked out the windows:

The store I sat in front of. They were having a Monster Sale!!:

And the line wrappeth around:

These folks look as though they’re ready to “hauck a lugie” on the folks downstairs:

These guys came by offering free video podcasts that could be downloaded “already formatted for the iPhone”. On Networks is based out of Austin, too. Gonna have to check it out.:

Mall Security doing their thing. The guy in the orange shirt is “Excited Guy”. The guy next to him decided to pull up a comfy chair from that seating area behind him.:

The line gets a little longer. I think this is as long as the line got before we shifted at 5:30. I think they made the line around 120-140 people long.

The paper is removed and the countdown begins:

The iStaff finishes the last of the preparations:

I call this one “Packing up”:

*From here until the first iPhone owner leaves the store, the Software Developer (Michael)’s daughter (who joined us to hang out around 5 pm) took for me.*
The staff does one last pep talk before letting in the crowd:

And the line gets antsy. The guy right behind the two Apple Employees is the first one in line.:

Almost time:

Welcome to the Apple Store!!!

She’s the first to come out of the store with an iPhone. Congratulations!!:

iTrash left behind by iLiners. The Apple Store was nice enough to give us the water. In San Francisco and in Oregon, I heard they got Starbucks!!:

The guy in the striped shirt is the guy who was first in line. We think he actually works at the Sunglass Hut kiosk there. In order to be the first in line, he got to the mall at 5am. They wouldn’t let him line up until 9am so instead of going home or to his car for a nap (which is what I would have done), he wandered the Apple Store area making sure to stake his claim to 1st in line. A bit much in my book.

These guys had their computer with them and activated the iPhone as soon as they walked out of the store, using the Apple Store’s WiFi.

I’m in!!!!!

Can you see Chris? He’s to the right of the blurred guy. His iJob was to direct customers to the right counters based on payment method and keep track of how many iPhones were sold. I think I bought #138 or something (each person could buy a max of 2).

And the folks behind me make their way in. Michael (the software developer) and his daughter & grand daughter enter first.

And here it is, folks. Me and my iPhone!!!!

This is Anthony. He sold me the phone. Thanks, Anthony!! (At least I think his name is Anthony. In the excitement, my memory may be off a bit.)

So, now I’m home and I’ve started the unpacking and activation of my iPhone.:


All done. What a great day! And all for the cost of an 8 gig iPhone. Oh, speaking of cost, here’s one last story for ya:

After I took the pictures of the time clicking down, I walked by the first few folks in line, asking in general if they were buying one for themselves or if they were hired on Craigslist to sit in line. The lady that was around #10 said she just got there to relieve the guy she hired off Craigslist to sit for her. She said she paid him $200, was going to buy an 8 gig iPhone ($650 with tax), and will have to get out of whatever non-AT&T contract she was currently using (~$175-$200). This makes her iPhone $1000 when it’s all said and done. Again, a bit too much for me. I’m glad I have time off during the summer and am already an AT&T customer with a media plan that costs what the iPhone media plan will cost.

Feel free to call me and make sure I have all your correct information. OR, if you use Plaxo, I can get it that way if I have your email address.

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