More than 100 people were lined up, covering half the 1600 block of Walnut Street, on Friday, waiting to snag the newly released iPhone X from the Apple Store.
The doors opened at 8 a.m. But police say customers had lined up as early as 8:30 the night before to be among the first to pick up the pricey new smart phone and sample its new features, such as facial recognition software, a larger screen, and a faster processor.
Despite its high price — around $1,000 for the base model — a couple hundred people also flooded the Apple Store at the Cherry Hill Mall when it opened at 9 a.m., mall security said. That store sold out around noon, promising only those in line that they could get served. “I started waiting in line at 11,” said Nandish Patel, 32. “We were the last people who got it.”
A common theme among customers was the desire for the newest model. “I have the antique, the iPhone 4S. It really is time for an upgrade,” said Elaine Davidson, 54, a musician from Dallas who was here to perform in The Phantom of the Opera at the Academy of Music.
“I primarily want the [iPhone X] because of the better camera. I have an iPhone 6, and I usually get a new phone every two years, so it is about time,” said Jason McAndrew, 37, a marketing manager from Philadelphia. He had ordered the phone but that would take two weeks, so he hoped to get the phone Friday if the wait was brief.
For those who wish to avoid the lines, the phone can be purchased online at Apple.com.
Apple’s stock rose 2.6 percent to $172.50 Friday, due to the iPhone X’s release. The iPhone line accounts for about two-thirds of Apple’s sales. CEO Tim Cook has focused on growing services, like Apple Music and iCloud, so the company can better bind consumers to Apple’s products.
Gilson Nunes, 27, a developer, likes being bound to Apple. “This phone is the new thing, and I want to be one of the first to try it out so I can optimize my client’s apps,” he said.