When the iPhone 4 was announced, I was totally excited to soon upgrade to this device. I was still using an iPhone 3G as I skipped on upgrading to the iPhone 3GS. This iPhone, now being an all time favorite of iPhone owners, was mocked and made fun of for its design in the beginning.
My father and I wanted to upgrade to this device. We decided, for a first, to camp out at our local Apple Store so we could get our hands on this new device on launch day. We made plans, a few days prior, to make sure we would be some of the first customers in line.
My father was a truck driver and just got off his shift (12 hours) and home around 10PM the night before. I worked as a manager at a grocery store and worked 10-8PM that day. We met up at his house at 11PM and took off to the Apple Store. We arrived there just before midnight.
When we arrived, the parking lot was empty except for four other cars. We noticed that the cars had people in them, however; no one was waiting in line in front of the store. We decided to get out of our car and head up to the store. Once there, the other people joined us. We were all excited to be there
We stood in line for about 20 minutes before, what looked like, and over-weight Colonel Sanders mall cop came to the door. He opened the door and asked what we were doing. After explaining to him why we were there, he told us that we all had to leave. We refused. He then mentioned that he would call the police if we continue to refuse.
We all started to head back to our cars and drive off the parking lot, however; we decided to park in the next parking lot over. We hung out there for about an hour, and started to notice more cars arriving. We decided it was time to head back over.
When we arrived again, we noticed that there were people waiting in line. We decided to join them. Once again, about 20 minuets later, this mall cop appeared. This time he appeared in his mall cop car. Once he got out of the car, he tells us that he had called the police. We all looked at each other then asked Colonial Sanders why he did that. He just kept saying we were on private property, and had no right to be here.
That’s when we heard the police sirens. We all ran back to our cars. Mostly everyone left, but my father and I decided to lean back in our chairs. With his tented windows and hardly any parking lot lights, the car appeared to be empty. The cops came and told everyone, that was still there, to leave. We could hear the cops telling them over a megaphone.
Once everyone left, the cops left as well. My father and I were still hanging out in our car. We finally decided to turn the vehicle on to get some AC as it was hot. My father’s car allowed him to turn off all the exterior lights when it was turned on, however; this made the interior lights extremely bright. Whenever we would see the mall cop’s vehicle passing by, we would just turn the car off so we wouldn’t get caught.
Time: 4:00 AM.
From midnight til 4:00 AM, we went from a dozen people to over a thousand people. This, apparently, scared the mall cop because he called the police back. When the police arrived, we all simply told them we were there for the iPhone release. The police, deciding the crowd was too big, went ahead and started a formal line.
Now, I’m not one to complain a lot. But this definitely made me upset. We went from 1st in line to 100th in line. To make matters worst, once the Apple store employees come out to speak to us, the devided the line up even further.
The line to the left are customers wanting to purchase the device, and the line to the right are customer who preorder the device for store pickup. We stayed about 100th in line, but it’s what Apple started to do that made us realize we were in for a long day…
For every one customer that was there to purchase the device, they would let in 10-20 customers who preorder the device. When it was time for the store to open, each line had over a thousand people. The store opened at 8AM for this iPhone release. The store normally opens at 10AM.
From 8AM until 4PM, my father and I waited in line. We saw many people in the preordered line come and go hours ago, but the preordered line just kept growing as the day went on.
When we finally made it into the Apple Store, my father was able to purchase his iPhone 4, and I was able to purchase the two I needed. I also purchased a new Bluetooth earpiece from Jawbone, and I purchased my father and I each a MobileMe.
By the time we arrived back to his house, it was already after 6PM. We were gone for 19 hours to purchase three smartphones. As crazy as it was, my father and I had a good time. We will forever have this memory of doing this together.