The iPhone XS First Day Apple Store Experience

21st of September

I’ve been having a mobile phone contract for more than 20 years now, and it always had the routine included of getting a new phone every 24 months. Some little changes here and there, but it never made sense to go to an Apple Store on an iPhone release day to buy one directly.

Until Today.

I had heard a bit about it, seen the pictures of crazy crowds storming into the Store at 8 AM sharp, being greeted by huge applause. Is that still the case? I wanted to finally have that experience myself. And after 24 months, my “old” iPhone wanted to get handed down to Sophie anyways. 

7:50 AM on release day, September 21st, still excited!
7:50 AM on release day, September 21st, still excited!

I’m far from a pro regarding these Apple events. So I made no reservation and prepared nothing. I thought, the times of people sleeping in front of the store in tents are surely over, the excitement must have gone down over the years. No need for a reservation, right? 

The final staff briefing
The final staff briefing
Here they are, these new phones
Here they are, these new phones
Good, they didn’t need as much crowd control as they thought. Better chances for me.
Good, they didn’t need as much crowd control as they thought. Better chances for me.
Okay, maybe about 80-100 iPhone (or Apple Watch) fans
Okay, maybe about 80-100 iPhone (or Apple Watch) fans
Alright, security is opening the doors, it’s starting!
Alright, security is opening the doors, it’s starting!
And the head of the store steps out to greet everyone
And the head of the store steps out to greet everyone

Also, the dude said with a huge faked smile that just the people with reservations and a pick-up slot of 8:00 to 8:30 AM were allowed to come in. A few of the crowd, maybe 40-50, did so and entered the store.

And yes, there was some clapping
And yes, there was some clapping

The huge amount of employees stood in a half-circle and clapped for 5 seconds. A bit disappointing. 

So, What About Us Normal People?

Apparently, no one else was allowed to enter! Not exactly what I was expecting. And it seemed very weird, given there were more employees in the store than customers. 

Everyone without a reservation was told to make one with one of the employees and got subsequently told a time slot in which to come back and pick up the device. 12:00 AM, they said to me.

Alright, that’s four hours of pointless waiting? I didn’t start a fight with the staff of course, but it did enrage me a little to be honest. This is obviously marketing tactics and makes no sense. 

I spend a few hours in the office and got some work done to pay for the iPhone and headed back at noon. 

More Waiting?!

First task there, getting in a line of about 10 people. For picking up a reserved device? Apple, come on, you can do better!

The store wasn’t even really full. I’ve seen it fuller on any standard Tuesday afternoon.
The store wasn’t even really full. I’ve seen it fuller on any standard Tuesday afternoon.

After 15 more minutes it was my turn to talk to another employee. His reservation scanning device failed. “There’s a lot going on here, full house, the WIFI is overloaded probably!”

What? Apple is the world’s most valuable company and up until recently even sold WIFI routers. And they can’t get the WIFI going for a very expected event like today? What’s going on here.

After he got another employee to help him, there was more waiting. Someone had to get the box from the back room. That took another 20 minutes of awkwardly standing around next to the employee, making stupid smalltalk. Not my ideal use of time. After that, they forgot about the case I wanted to buy as well – another 10 minutes of fetching it from the back room. Who runs this store? Is it their first day, maybe?

First World Problems 😂

After that was done I was glad to be able to finally leave. Got some Läderach chocolate on the way – so delicious!

30 minutes of biking through the sudden rain really fit my Apple Store experience. 

But then, I finally got to open the box. 

And all is forgotten!
And all is forgotten!
A guide? You’re doing it wrong!
A guide? You’re doing it wrong!
The standard contents
The standard contents
Very pretty. All is well.
Very pretty. All is well.
For the first time I decided against a black or spacegray one and went for silver. Why not.
For the first time I decided against a black or spacegray one and went for silver. Why not.
The transition process from the old phone was better than ever. It involved scanning a sort of QR code on the new phone with the camera of the old phone. 20 minutes later, it was done.
The transition process from the old phone was better than ever. It involved scanning a sort of QR code on the new phone with the camera of the old phone. 20 minutes later, it was done.
All other cases except for Apple’s own leather cases fail, in my opinion. As a vegetarian, I would prefer artificial leather like Tesla uses, but okay.
All other cases except for Apple’s own leather cases fail, in my opinion. As a vegetarian, I would prefer artificial leather like Tesla uses, but okay.

Anyways, after the first few hours of usage, I am glad I got this phone. It feels really good, works well and fast, everything as it’s supposed to be. 

Next time I’ll order it and let it get delivered to my house again, though! 😉

 

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