Following a week-long stretch of pre-orders, the flagship iPhone that Apple introduced back in September finally went on sale yesterday, November 3. For the folks who did pre-order, and managed to get a delivery date for launch day, there wasn't a lot of reason to rush around. After all, a delivery person would drop off the handset when they got around to it.
For those who didn't pre-order, and still wanted to get their hands on the smartphone on launch day (and avoid weeks of waiting), then that meant waiting in a line. As is par for the course, Apple did confirm that their retail stores would have stock ready for walk-in customers, but also pointed out that arriving early would be a very good idea.
And people did arrive early.
People started posting pictures and sharing them on social media, showing off how big lines were. As usual, queues stretched out for blocks depending on the city. In New York, tents popped up in front of iconic Apple retail stores, and, as the launch hour neared, lines twisted around blocks.
Last year, I showed up at my local store about two hours before launch. The store I was at is a third-party retailer, a wireless carrier, but it's the best possible option to get a new iPhone in this neck-of-the-woods. And last year the store didn't get any iPhone 7 Plus units in, which is the only reason I was able to even get a phone. I was originally too far back in line (27th) based on the stock available. But with the news that the bigger model wasn't available, 17 people left. So while I wanted a 7 Plus, I walked out with a 7.
So this year I planned a bit better. Or at least I thought I did. I'd leave a movie at midnight, go see if anyone lined up, and then go from there. I showed up and no one was there. A friend and I decided that we'd sleep for a couple hours, in our cars there in the parking lot. No one showed up at 4:00 AM, either.
First person didn't show up until 5:15 AM. And while I went out there at 5:30 AM, there wasn't another person that joined the line until 7:00 AM. When the store opened at 8:00 AM there were 13 people total in line. This wasn't just a stark change from the lines I was watching grow throughout the rest of the United States that morning (and the world earlier in the day), but even just from last year at the same location.
This isn't a doom-and-gloom story. I know the iPhone X is selling well. If I had to guess, based on where I am, and even with monthly installment plans, I'd venture to say that the price point of the iPhone X was the big road block this time around. That's just a guess, though. Seeing the difference from last year to now was pretty crazy, though.
So did you wait in a line to get your iPhone X this year? If you did, what time did you get there, what number position were you in, and how long did it end up being when the store opened? Do you typically wait in line, or was this year different? Let me know!