Calgary iPhone 4 Launch
Happy campers queueing in an orderly fashion then entering the Market Mall Apple Store in Calgary, Alberta at 8:15 am, July 30th.
True to my word, I did NOT get up at 5am just to stand in line for the 7am Apple store opening at Calgary’s Market Mall today (I’ll probably buy an iPhone 4 eventually, but I’m not in that much of a hurry). However, I did swing by Market Mall on my way into work just to see what kind of crowds the iPhone 4 launch would draw on a sunny Friday morning, just before a long weekend. As I approached the Mall at 8am, I noticed that while most of the parking lot was deserted, the area around the entrance closest to the Apple Store was completely full!
More than 300 chics, freaks and geeks were waiting, money in hand for the new iPhone this morning.
I made my way inside the Mall doors and immediately ran into two lines… the first being the line to get into the local Rogers dealer (one of the Telcos offering the iPhone), and the second being the line for the Apple Store… or rather the “pre-line”. As I rounded the corner to the Apple Store, I then saw the real line — a massive, snaking queue in the courtyard. An Apple employee (lets call him “Bob”) was busy handing out bottled water and keeping the crowd’s spirits up. I estimated there were approximately 300ish in the queue. I asked Bob if the Apple Store really had enough stock for all the people in the line. He quickly replied “Yes, and then some”. Hmmm, impressive!
On my way out, I stopped and talked to a couple of people in the pre-line. They’d been there since 7:30 and were psyched to get their hands on the new iPhone. They’d been told that Rogers had 50 phones per store and that the Apple Store had the rest of Calgary’s supply. After arriving back home I checked the Apple Canada online store and found both 16gb and 32gb Black iPhone 4 models listed at $659 CDN and $779 CDN respectively with a 3 week delivery! So much for ample supplies. Hmmmm, NOT impressive!
A quick check of the Australia and Hong Kong online Apple Stores tell the same story, so the supply problem isn’t unique to Canada. Some local scammers are trying to sell these on KIJIJI.com for up to $1,400! I can’t believe anyone would be stupid enough to pay nearly double for something that appears to be in adequate local supply… oh well, as PT Barnum once said there’s one born every minute!
Still plenty of folks waiting in line at noon…
UPDATE: I went back at lunchtime for another look and there were still more than 150 people patiently waiting for their new iPhone. Also, I was inaccurate about the local Telcos getting their supply in a month… looks like all of them have at least limited supplies now. While Canada’s iPhone launch seems to gone smoothly, that apparently wasn’t the case in New Zealand.
UPDATE #2: Stopped by on Tuesday afternoon (August 3) and there was STILL a 3 hour line… and they were out of 32gb phones. I’ll stop by again over the weekend.
UPDATE #3: August 9th, sold out and waiting for new stock.