Quick iPhone launch in Hawaii

Iphone_launchedDid you get an iPhone today?

In Hawaii, the nationwide availability of the device was actually pretty uneventful. My husband and I left the house this afternoon at around 4:30 p.m. to see what was going on at an AT&T store in Kaimuki and at the Apple Store in Kahala Mall. At 5 p.m., there were about 30 people lined up outside the stand-alone AT&T shop. Since standing across the street to take a picture of them would be too obvious and embarrassing, we just kept driving. I had no intention to buy an iPhone, so we almost just turned around and went home. Instead, and for no other reason than the fact that we were already out, we headed for Kahala Mall.

Only about 150 people were lined up outside of the Apple Store, which already had its black curtains drawn, and they snaked around the mall in sections so as not to block the common areas. Again, I had no interest in leaving with an iPhone, so we walked around and generally just loitered until we came across an unattended AT&T kiosk.

This was the scene at about 5:30 p.m., half an hour before the iPhone would go on sale.

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Since there was no line, we figured that we may as well just wait. At the very least, I could get some hands-on time and maybe a few pictures.

Fifteen minutes later, an AT&T employee appeared and said that they were only prepared to take preorders at 6 p.m. Somehow the mere idea of not being able to walk away from the kiosk with an iPhone, which I didn’t really want in the first place, made us cross one of the mall’s common areas and take our place at the end of the line. And I mean the end. Absolutely last.

Call it temporary insanity or closeted desire, but at 5:45 p.m. we got in line to buy an iPhone. The doors opened promptly at 6 p.m. (or so the applause and cheers coming from the front of line suggested) and 45 minutes later, we walked out of the Apple Store with a 4GB iPhone (I know the 8GB model is a better deal, but the $100 saved pays for nearly two months of AT&T service and I don’t need the extra space).

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We took the escalator upstairs to T-Mobile, where employees donned "the only phone you need" T-shirts, and waited in line for 15 minutes until one of the three workers was able to tell us that my contract was expired and I was free to switch to another carrier with no penalty.

AT&T and activation via iTunes, here I come.

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Jenn K. Lee

Jenn K. Lee is the founder of Pocketables. She loves gadgets the way most women love shoes and purses. The pieces in her tech wardrobe that go with everything are currently the Samsung Galaxy Note II, Sony Tablet P, and Nexus 7, but there are still a couple of vintage UMPCs/MIDs in the back of her closet.

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