Apple fans line up for iPhone 11, Apple Watch Series 5 as first orders arrive

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in iPhone
From Singapore to Dubai, die-hard Apple fans around the world are once again taking part in an annual rite of passage: queuing up and braving the elements, sometimes overnight, to be one of the first to own this year's iPhone.


Apple Ginza on Friday, Sept. 20. | Source: xeno_twit via Twitter


Customers began to form lines in front of Apple stores in Dubai, Japan, Singapore and other locales late Thursday and early Friday in anticipation of a start to brick-and-mortar store sales of iPhone 11, 11 Pro, 11 Pro Max and Apple Watch Series 5. As in years past, line-waiters shared photos of their experience online.

Security guards were out in force Friday morning to help fans -- and perhaps a few scalpers -- form tidy lines in front of Japan's new Marunouchi store in Tokyo. While not the onslaught of years past, about a dozen people were present at 5:30 a.m., according to one Twitter user.

A similar scene is unfolding a few blocks away at Apple Ginza, while Apple Omotesando, which is due to open in tandem with the launch iPhone 11, saw a couple stalwart fans peer into its windows in the morning's wee hours. A few hours before opening, staff at the Ginza store carted out apple juice, tea and pastries to those waiting in line, as customers at the Omotesando location were offered coffee and bread.


Apple Omotesando prepares for iPhone 11. | Source: Twitter


Apple Dubai's massive glass doors opened to a clutch of overnight campers.

Another iPhone launch another crazy scene. Can't believe people actually wait in a queue for a full night to pay money! #Apple #IPhone11 #Madness pic.twitter.com/dWUFKFLefF

— Yahya Munir (@yahya__munir)


Apple Krntner Strae in Vienna, Austria, is also hosting a small line ahead of Friday's launch.

Ist ab morgen etwa das #iPhone11 in Wien erhltlich!? #apple #store #krntnerstrae pic.twitter.com/xPnVvdHu4f

— Christopher Abel (@abelinho87_)


Evidence of queues has yet to surface in the U.S., though it appears Apple is not allowing lines to form at certain high-profile locations. For example, staff are telling customers to move along at Apple Fifth Avenue, which reopens Friday after a long renovation period.

Just west of the international dateline in New Zealand and Australia, iPhone 11 and Apple Watch Series 5 are starting to land on the doorsteps of preorder customers. Availability will expand to Asia and Europe in the coming hours, with North and South America slated to gain access last.

Don't forget to check out AppleInsider's top setup tips when that shiny new iPhone arrives.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 19
    zoetmbzoetmb Posts: 2,490member
    I've never understood why anyone would do this.  What's the difference if you buy a new phone on the day it's released, a day later, a week later or a month (or more) later?   And I've never understood how there are people who can both afford the phone and waste so much time.   But I will give them some credit for having the patience to stand on line.   If a line is more than 10-15 minutes for anything, I'm out of there.   


    radarthekatcornchipmuthuk_vanalingamcharlesgreschemengin1Japhey
  • Reply 2 of 19
    I understand this is a kind of ritual to some people but it still caught me off guard why it's still a thing now. I thought everyone is lining up online these days.
    Soliradarthekatlollivercornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 19
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,615member
    zoetmb said:
    I've never understood why anyone would do this.  What's the difference if you buy a new phone on the day it's released, a day later, a week later or a month (or more) later?   And I've never understood how there are people who can both afford the phone and waste so much time.   But I will give them some credit for having the patience to stand on line.   If a line is more than 10-15 minutes for anything, I'm out of there.   

    I can see how this was a 'thing' in the past when MS ruled and Apple fans were alternative rebels stickin' it to the man... but now? Apple is firmly entrenched in the main stream and is fully 'establishment'. Apple products are cool and better than ever but yeah, I too am outa there in 15. :) 
    radarthekatmuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 4 of 19
    zoetmb said:
    I've never understood why anyone would do this.  What's the difference if you buy a new phone on the day it's released, a day later, a week later or a month (or more) later?   And I've never understood how there are people who can both afford the phone and waste so much time.   But I will give them some credit for having the patience to stand on line.   If a line is more than 10-15 minutes for anything, I'm out of there.   


    As someone who's stood in many a line outside an Apple store for iPhones and iPads, they were a TON of fun and exciting to do with friends and fellow Apple fans. It was really more about the conversation amongst the line goers. The comradere. Having fun with the people who walked by constantly asking 'what are you standing in line for?' was a bonus. It was exciting to hear everyones thoughts about what features they should put in NEXT years model, what cool things are you going to do with this years model, what new feature are you most excited about, etc etc. I planned for these things and took PTO in order to stay in line if I had to, but typically it was as easy as leaving work a little early one day, and packing a comfy chair, neck pillow and snacks. Luckily my Apple store was indoors, so weather wasn't really an issue. Plus, people were always good about letting you go grab a burger down the street if need be. While getting a pre-order via the internet is simple and easy now - it wasn't back then, and there's a part of me that misses those 'camp outs'. 
    applesnorangesDeelronlollivercornchipmuthuk_vanalingamAppleExposedbadmonkwatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 19
    Correction: They are lining up to pick up, not to buy. All of them have purchased online, and rather than waiting for delivery who knows when, they go to store first thing to get the shiny.
    cornchipbloggerblogmuthuk_vanalingamwatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 19
    The Japanese love queuing. iPhones, doughnuts...


    radarthekatronncornchip
  • Reply 7 of 19
    People need a life. As noted before, how do people have the time and money? For me it’s the time, it’s just too valuable to waste on material things. Order online and it takes 10 minutes (if you are slow as hell), more like 2.  
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 8 of 19
    kevin kee said:
    Correction: They are lining up to pick up, not to buy. All of them have purchased online, and rather than waiting for delivery who knows when, they go to store first thing to get the shiny.
    While some may be in line to pick up a pre-order, most are there in line hoping to be lucky enough to make a purchase -- Apple stores do get a reserve of new products for sale on release day you know.
    AppleExposed
  • Reply 9 of 19
    ronnronn Posts: 336member
    zoetmb said:
    I've never understood why anyone would do this.  What's the difference if you buy a new phone on the day it's released, a day later, a week later or a month (or more) later?   And I've never understood how there are people who can both afford the phone and waste so much time.   But I will give them some credit for having the patience to stand on line.   If a line is more than 10-15 minutes for anything, I'm out of there.   


    I was always like that till the Apple 5th Avenue store opening in NYC years ago. I was about to abandon my spot when a new co-worker happened along. She joined me and it was a lot of fun talking to fellow Apple fans and answering the puzzled passersby. We got to talk to Spike Lee, the Original Queer Eye Guys and and she wound up with two tees.

    I don't think I have the patience nor stamina to try that now. I'll wait till next month to check out the new phones in person; especially since I'm waiting to see if there's an iPad event in October.
    AppleExposedwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 19
    zoetmb said:
    I've never understood why anyone would do this.  What's the difference if you buy a new phone on the day it's released, a day later, a week later or a month (or more) later?   And I've never understood how there are people who can both afford the phone and waste so much time.   But I will give them some credit for having the patience to stand on line.   If a line is more than 10-15 minutes for anything, I'm out of there.   


    It's not a waste of time to take part in a unique opportunity to socialize with like-minded people. It's kind of like queueing for tickets to a rock concert. You know others are there for the same reason, and you have common ground with them. A few years ago, I queued up for an iPhone 6 around 7pm the night before at my Apple Store in Tampa, Florida. We were sitting in line in chairs and having pleasant conversations practically all night. One nearby person sprung for a half-dozen pizzas and shared them with some of us. It was fun. We just stayed up all night outside the shopping mall. Come morning, and a couple hours before the store opened, some store staff came out and distributed bottles of water. And then they started taking payments via their hand held devices for phones they had in stock. Once they opened the doors, we then simply waited in more line to pick up our phones.
    cornchipAppleExposedwatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 19
    macguimacgui Posts: 1,507member
    I remember those days. Lots of fun. I don't miss them, but I do feel a little nostalgia.
    cornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 19
    dewmedewme Posts: 2,187member
    zoetmb said:
    I've never understood why anyone would do this.  What's the difference if you buy a new phone on the day it's released, a day later, a week later or a month (or more) later?   And I've never understood how there are people who can both afford the phone and waste so much time.   But I will give them some credit for having the patience to stand on line.   If a line is more than 10-15 minutes for anything, I'm out of there.   


    There’s nothing to understand, it’s just people being people. You could make similar claims about the seeming waste of time, timing relevance, money, patience, etc., for every single ceremony or ritual that people engage in, whether formal, informal, or just plain silly. Almost everyone engages in some form of ceremony or ritual at some level, and for any number of different reasons. The thing is, people get to decide, all on their own I might add, how they spend whatever time and money that they have at their disposal. There is no universal logic and reason that applies to anyone, much less everyone. 
    muthuk_vanalingamAppleExposedwatto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 19
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,738member
    It's been many years since I last stood in any Apple launch line, but I've done it a couple of times in the past. I remember making a thread here about the many scalpers that were in one of my lines many years ago. I think that was when the iPad 2 was first released, and it was very, very hard to get in the beginning I remember.

    I'm not going to criticize anybody who chooses to line up outside an Apple store to get a certain product, since I've done it myself before.

    And guess what, I don't regret it and overall it was a fun experience. You get to meet and talk with many different people from all walks of life that all share at least one common interest.

    To the people who say they don't have the time, well maybe they should get a life, because I feel sorry for anybody who is so busy either with work or with other things that they wouldn't have the time to spare and just go and do whatever they please every once in a while. And if somebody chooses to spend a night waiting on an Apple line along with some friends or perhaps making new friends, then who are you to judge them?
    kevin keeAppleExposedwatto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 19
    ajlajl Posts: 113member
    And you forgot to recall another chance that Apple offers: preorders ;)
    zoetmb said:
    I've never understood why anyone would do this.  What's the difference if you buy a new phone on the day it's released, a day later, a week later or a month (or more) later?   And I've never understood how there are people who can both afford the phone and waste so much time.   But I will give them some credit for having the patience to stand on line.   If a line is more than 10-15 minutes for anything, I'm out of there.   


  • Reply 15 of 19
    Wow. Lots of “I wouldn’t do this so neither should anyone else” comments here. If this is what people want to do, what’s the harm?! FFS let people live. 
    muthuk_vanalingamAppleExposedwatto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 19
    I'd love to do this some time.  It looks like a fun way to spend a few hours.  But I live in a region (the Balkans) where there are no Apple Stores (just resellers) so I'd have to time a trip to somewhere where there are "real" stores.  But with such short notice about what day they'll be available, it makes it tough.  
    Oh well, some day . . .
    (Do you think anyone would think I'm weird if I did this on a normal day, with no new releases?? ha ha )
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 19
    AppleExposedAppleExposed Posts: 1,655unconfirmed, member
    zoetmb said:
    I've never understood why anyone would do this.  What's the difference if you buy a new phone on the day it's released, a day later, a week later or a month (or more) later?   And I've never understood how there are people who can both afford the phone and waste so much time.   But I will give them some credit for having the patience to stand on line.   If a line is more than 10-15 minutes for anything, I'm out of there.   


    kevin kee said:
    I understand this is a kind of ritual to some people but it still caught me off guard why it's still a thing now. I thought everyone is lining up online these days.

    It's a social thing.

    Why do people watch movies on release day when they can wait a month or get it on DVD in 3 months?

    Let people have fun with their time. I wish I had the time too but it doesn't make me envious of them. Some of the best memories of my life were waiting in lines with fellow fans of video games and consoles. You wouldn't understand.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 18 of 19
    AppleExposedAppleExposed Posts: 1,655unconfirmed, member
    seankill said:
    People need a life. As noted before, how do people have the time and money? For me it’s the time, it’s just too valuable to waste on material things. Order online and it takes 10 minutes (if you are slow as hell), more like 2.  

    Being a hermit at home is a lot more fun *eye roll*.
  • Reply 19 of 19
    As someone who stood in line in the full glare of the sun in 2007 for the original iPhone, I can tell you it was a magical moment.  It was cool to have this magical device that everyone, wanted to touch and feel and experience.  I saw where the culture was going in that moment.  I think I can only compare it to the Beatles’ British Invasion in the 1960s, a moment when you could see that the culture was going to radically change.
    watto_cobra
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