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Steve Jobs' first iPhone call still spawns Starbucks pranks 6 years later

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
In a moment of levity during the iPhone's 2007 introduction, Steve Jobs prank called a San Francisco-area Starbucks; six years later, some Apple fans are pulling the same joke with some regularity.



Demonstrating the just-revealed iPhone's ability to map locations and call them, the late Apple cofounder dropped a line to a Starbucks near the Moscone West Center where Apple's event was being held. As seen at about the five-minute mark in the above video, a young barista, Ying Hang "Hannah" Zhang, answered the phone, and Jobs jokingly ordered "4,000 lattes to go, please."

Fast Company tracked down Zhang, who still works at the same Starbucks. The barista recalled her brief phone encounter with Jobs.

"Honestly, I was shocked," Zhang said, "I have never heard somebody order 4,000 lattes to go. I didn't say anything because I was shocked. But my first impression was that he was just being humorous. He sounded like a gentleman."

According to Zhang, the store has become something of a pilgrimage site for some hard core Apple fans.

"Customers would sometimes come up to me and go, 'Did you know somebody at your store actually talked to Steve Jobs?'"

And Jobs' prank call lives on, Zhang says. Apple fans will still, six years later, call up the Starbucks where she works, asking for 4,000 lattes.

"After he made the call," Zhang explained, "everyone copied him, prank calling our store and ordering thousands of lattes ? to this day!"

The wait time for such a large latte order? Zhang and her estimated it takes about 44 seconds to make a single latte. Assuming no breaks and an ample supply of milk, Jobs' order would've taken 48 hours to fill.
post #2 of 26
and no one sued Jobs, right? I heard Sammy called the Starbucks in Seoul but were laughed at.
post #3 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

... The wait time for such a large latte order? Zhang and her estimated it takes about 44 seconds to make a single latte. Assuming no breaks and an ample supply of milk, Jobs' order would've taken 48 hours to fill.

 

Also assuming a single group and steam wand, and not including time to clean the wand and portafilter between lattes. Although, actually, I think *$'s is using super-autos these days, and not sure if they even do the milk manually any longer. 

post #4 of 26

People actually go to this Starbucks because Steve Jobs called it? WTF

 

Do people ask for Zhang's autograph? OMG, you're the one who took the call! You're so famous! 1hmm.gif

post #5 of 26
God, I miss Steve. What a great personality he had.

Why does Apple bashing and trolling make people feel so good?

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Why does Apple bashing and trolling make people feel so good?

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post #6 of 26
Steve Jobs still missed to this day. I miss his presentations. Each one was treated like Christmas morning.
post #7 of 26
What a horribly unoriginal prank.

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

 

Goodbyeee jragosta :: http://forums.appleinsider.com/t/160864/jragosta-joseph-michael-ragosta

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

 

Goodbyeee jragosta :: http://forums.appleinsider.com/t/160864/jragosta-joseph-michael-ragosta

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post #8 of 26
It would have been better if he'd actually ordered all of those lattes for real. It's not like he didn't have the cash.
post #9 of 26

In other news, Samsung called Starpreya and ordered 4,001 lattes in their most recent Galaxy phone unveiling.

 

Oh, by the way, NICE FRICKING GOING, KOREA.

Originally Posted by asdasd

This is Appleinsider. It's all there for you but we can't do it for you.
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Originally Posted by asdasd

This is Appleinsider. It's all there for you but we can't do it for you.
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post #10 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

What a horribly unoriginal prank.

Why does that surprise you?

It's not Apple fans doing it . . . It's various executives from Google, Samsung, and HTC.

post #11 of 26

Whoa, you aced me!

You must have hit the submit button just after I hit the quote button.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

In other news, Samsung called Starpreya and ordered 4,001 lattes in their most recent Galaxy phone unveiling.

 

Oh, by the way, NICE FRICKING GOING, KOREA.

post #12 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Oh, by the way, NICE FRICKING GOING, KOREA.

When did Sammy enter the coffee market?
post #13 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Oh, by the way, NICE FRICKING GOING, KOREA.

 

Ha.  When I was in the Army in Korea, the local businesses always tried to woo soldiers in by using familar names and colors.

 

The local town by 2nd Div had a place with tiny red and yellow arches, and a "Big Mac" that was a slab of meat covered by a piece of cabbage and chunk of cheese.


And in Seoul at the time, there was a restaurant that called itself "House of Kentucky Fried".  (Of course, nowadays, the real thing is probably available.)

 

--

 

People have to understand that Koreans were very grateful for the help the US gave, and many sought to emulate Americans and American products.

 

If you recall, the Japanese did the same thing (in cheap materials) for many years as well.  Also, to a lesser extent, Italians and others.

 

So yes, it's seen as a compliment to do whatever Americans do. Over time, that will change, just as "Made in Japan" came to mean something different as well.

 

And it goes both ways.  Look at how popular "Gangnam Style" got in the US, to the great puzzlement of most Koreans.


Edited by KDarling - 3/4/13 at 10:49am
post #14 of 26
Miss you Steve. You were a world-changer like no other. It's so sad you only lived to see the first few years of the revolution you created. You should have had decades ahead of you and more revolutions to come.
Edited by jd_in_sb - 3/4/13 at 10:57am

Please update the AppleInsider app to function in landscape mode.

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Please update the AppleInsider app to function in landscape mode.

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post #15 of 26
What a man! The true demonstration! Love you Steve Jobs! We miss you always!
post #16 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by KDarling View Post

The local town by 2nd Div had a place with tiny red and yellow arches, and a "Big Mac" that was a slab of meat covered by a piece of cabbage and chunk of cheese.

Reminds me of the McDowell's Big Mic from "Coming To America". :)

post #17 of 26

Yep. The large scale industrial copying practices that are sometimes pursued are a big turn off. But I really enjoyed living in Asia and the friends I met there (and here in the US) have been wonderful.

I also admire many of the companies and products originating from asia, particularly certain ones from Japan and Korea. The interplay and cross pollenization between asia and the US that has occurred in engineering, design and production over the last 75+ years has been incredibly synergistic and beneficial.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KDarling View Post

So yes, it's seen as a compliment to do whatever Americans do.  (Sometimes doing the opposite is popular as well.)  Over time, that will change.

 

And it goes both ways.  Look at how popular "Gangnam Style" got in the US, to the great puzzlement of most Koreans.

post #18 of 26

Boom!

post #19 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by KDarling View Post

 

Ha.  When I was in the Army in Korea, the local businesses always tried to woo soldiers in by using familar names and colors.

 

The local town by 2nd Div had a place with tiny red and yellow arches, and a "Big Mac" that was a slab of meat covered by a piece of cabbage and chunk of cheese.


And in Seoul at the time, there was a restaurant that called itself "House of Kentucky Fried".  (Of course, nowadays, the real thing is probably available.)

 

--

 

People have to understand that Koreans were very grateful for the help the US gave, and many sought to emulate Americans and American products.

 

If you recall, the Japanese did the same thing (in cheap materials) for many years as well.  Also, to a lesser extent, Italians and others.

 

So yes, it's seen as a compliment to do whatever Americans do. Over time, that will change, just as "Made in Japan" came to mean something different as well.

 

And it goes both ways.  Look at how popular "Gangnam Style" got in the US, to the great puzzlement of most Koreans.

I talked to someone that hangs out with a bunch of Koreans and she said that Psy is like the Korean version of Weird Al Yankovic.  Does spoof type videos of a regular hit song.  Yeah, it's a stupid video which is what it is. But most people aren't into it because it's a great song, they are into it because it's stupid and most kids emulate until they grow up and find themselves.

post #20 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by KDarling View Post

 

Ha.  When I was in the Army in Korea, the local businesses always tried to woo soldiers in by using familar names and colors.

 

The local town by 2nd Div had a place with tiny red and yellow arches, and a "Big Mac" that was a slab of meat covered by a piece of cabbage and chunk of cheese.


And in Seoul at the time, there was a restaurant that called itself "House of Kentucky Fried".  (Of course, nowadays, the real thing is probably available.)

 

--

 

People have to understand that Koreans were very grateful for the help the US gave, and many sought to emulate Americans and American products.

 

If you recall, the Japanese did the same thing (in cheap materials) for many years as well.  Also, to a lesser extent, Italians and others.

 

So yes, it's seen as a compliment to do whatever Americans do. Over time, that will change, just as "Made in Japan" came to mean something different as well.

 

And it goes both ways.  Look at how popular "Gangnam Style" got in the US, to the great puzzlement of most Koreans.

 

Reminds of a McDonald's clone in Senegal, West Africa. It was called MicMac's and had a "Big Burger" that looked like a Big Mac. Not even close in taste, though. And the "ketchup" was runny and tasted like it was 50% vinegar. But boy did I wolf down that burger. After two weeks eating hotel food, it was a godsend!

post #21 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by ronn View Post

 

Reminds of a McDonald's clone in Senegal, West Africa. It was called MicMac's and had a "Big Burger" that looked like a Big Mac. Not even close in taste, though. And the "ketchup" was runny and tasted like it was 50% vinegar. But boy did I wolf down that burger. After two weeks eating hotel food, it was a godsend!

 

 

Why not eating senegal food instead of hotel food?

post #22 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yazolight View Post


Why not eating senegal food instead of hotel food?
Don't be silly! Americans don't eat the local food when traveling abroad.
post #23 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yazolight View Post

Why not eating senegal food instead of hotel food?

Seems to me MicMac's (as described) *is* Senegalese food. Certainly as much as any other locally produced food.

In the US you can find just about any style of food. Americans tend to enjoy variety.

BTW, going to Paris in April and looking forward to the food (no I will not be having any hamburgers.)


Edited by DESuserIGN - 3/5/13 at 6:50am
post #24 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by TokyoJimu View Post

Don't be silly! Americans don't eat the local food when traveling abroad.

I greatly enjoyed the food living in China for 2 years.

That didn't prevent me from also enjoying the occasional yack-burger when I was in Tibet though. No not McDonalds — this was in the mid eighties.

post #25 of 26
I'm surprised nobody has hunted down all the plateless mercedes coupes he used to lease and resold them to fanbois...
post #26 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yazolight View Post

 

 

Why not eating senegal food instead of hotel food?

Every opportunity to eat Senegalese food was a great day. Unfortunately for the group, there was a just concluded civil war and our hotel had machine gun-toting soldiers guarding the property. Not ideal for going out on our own. Of course, all of the New Yorkers in the group gave the tour guide a heart attack as we went into town on our own and visited a couple of homes of local students. That's where we had the best meals during the trip.

 

And although MicMac's wasn't close to McDonald's, I would classify the food as Senegalese: at least a Senegalese twist on an American staple.

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AppleInsider › Forums › Mobile › iPhone › Steve Jobs' first iPhone call still spawns Starbucks pranks 6 years later