Thursday, June 24, 2010

Choosing When to Wait

I had a reservation for a new iPhone4 today which entitled me to go to the Apple Store in Clarendon and pick it up.  It sounded so simple.
I figured I would let the crowd thin out and show up around noon.  But when I arrived the lines were as far as I could see in either direction and many people had been waiting for 5 and 6 hours for their new phones.

I took a free sandwich and a cool apple (since it was pushing 99 degrees) and left.  There was no way I was going to wait for hours for something that was by no means a necessity.
I called a couple of times during the afternoon and in each case the lines were shrinking.  So at 8:00 I ventured back out to see if I could use my reservation which expired at 10:00.
When I arrived and “checked in”, the enthusiastic Apple employee told me it would be a 45 minute wait.  Meanwhile I drank their free water and watched them assemble a barrel of umbrellas in case the predicted rain came.

After about 25 minutes I was introduced to a vivacious recent college grad Kelly, who was charged with providing my new phone and as many of the add-ons as she could convince me to buy.
I opted out of most everything but the phone and its docking station.  Then Kelly activated my phone, swiped my charge card, and handed me off to Chris, whose job it was to transfer things like my address book and calendar to my new phone.  (Chris said he had been there since 4:30 am.)  It was all very slick and typically Apple-efficient.
I asked Kelly how many phones they had sold at Clarendon today.  She said they never tell the employees, but I can guarantee it was an unbelievable number.
It was an interesting model, weighing the line size against the availability of phones.  Apple had pretty much promised that if you had a reservation and showed up before they closed the doors you would get a phone.  I took them at their word and walked out with a new phone at a bargain since my plan was soon up for renewal.  
My new iPhone4 is slimmer than my old phone and yet it promises all sorts of new features like 3G, more speed, better camera, video, and on and on and on.  Smaller is definitely better in this case and well worth a 25-minute wait.  But 6 hours -- I still say NO!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

As always, you handled your purchase with good planning! Glad it worked out so well.

I still have an old, "dumb" cell phone. As usual, I'm ten years behind everyone else... :-)


12:26 AM  
Blogger Washington Cube said...

I'm sure I'm getting this model and upgrading from my first generation. The question is: black or white?

11:48 AM  
Blogger Gary said...

Ever since my dinner with Steve and Kimy where Steve showed me his iPhone I have been thinking it would be nice to get one. However, I am still happy with my Blackberry and Verizon and not a fan of AT&T.

Plus, like you I don't have a desire to deal with the crowds or the wait.

12:15 PM  
Blogger Kristin said...

I'm just not patient enough for that, but I'm had you got the new phone without too much of a wait.

10:08 PM  

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