iPhone 4: the wait continues

There was no line at Walmart, but no iPhone 4 either.

Matt Miller wrote a great piece on why he wouldn't be buying an iPhone 4 today. He boils his reasoning down to four things:

  • AT&T network performance (or lack thereof)
  • Sprint vs Verizon vs AT&T monthly fee comparison
  • iOS experiences on iPhone 3GS
  • The Android competition
He goes into more detail in his article, so if you're on the fence about the iPhone 4, make sure to give it a read. As the title of this article suggests, I'm sitting here without an iPhone 4. I went through some of the decision process that Matt did, but in the end I woke up this morning and still decided to try to get one of my own. I previously wrote about my own pre-order experience, which guarantees me an iPhone 4 mid-July, but I decided to try to get one on launch day anyway. Below is a quick rundown of my experience. times are in EST 6:50AM: - Call to Walmart. Placed on hold as the receptionist tries to find out if they have iPhone 4 devices
7:00AM - Arrive at Walmart--no line! Run to back of store since the front of the store didn't know what an iPhone 4 was. Told that this Walmart NEVER gets the iPhone
7:10AM - Call 24 hour Walmart--person on the phone says that they never get iPhones.

Does any Walmart get the iPhone 4?

7:15AM - Call to RadioShack goes unanswered
7:16AM - Call to BestBuy and recording says the store is closed
7:45AM - Arrive at Apple Store in mall The rest is best told in pictures and video. Needless to say, no iPhone 4 for me today since the Apple rep at the back of the line started laughing when I showed up and then said, "I can't guarantee an iPhone for you today". To be fair I did ask her if it was about a 30 minute wait. Also, my wife stopped by the mall at noon and mentioned that the line was "insane". She's not up on the usual antics of iPhone launch day and initially offered to "stop by" and pick one up for me if I needed her to. I wish I could have seen the look on her face when she saw the line.

Start of the line -- at the Apple Store

Almost the end of the line
Walking the line at the Apple Store

A friend waited in Austin since 4am (he had pre-ordered). This was his line when he started.

Walking the Austin reserved line

I have to admit that I expected the giant line, but what threw me was how giant the line was for pre-order. When I bought the iPad (see my purchase story) I had it delivered to my office. I waited all morning for it to arrive, while a friend had it shipped to the Apple Store. His transaction took less than 10 minutes, including waiting in line. This time around, though, even folks that pre-ordered had to wait for hours to get their hands on an iPhone 4. Of course, as a mobile guy, it pains me to not have the iPhone 4 in my hand, but with iOS4 running on a 3GS, I already feel like I have a great new phone. Did you wait in line? If so, share your experience.