The iPhone 5 wait continues: Lines begin forming at New York Apple Store [UPDATED]

iPhone 5 lineFor iPhone 5 fans, September 12 was not the end of the long wait before Apple finally announced the official details and specs of its latest smartphone. Instead, the even longer wait has just begun. Die-hard customers have already formed a line outside of the Apple flagship store in New York City on 5th Avenue, hoping to be one of the first in the nation to get their hands on the shiny new Apple toy.

iphone 5 line 2It was a gloomy Tuesday afternoon, four days before the iPhone 5 is slated for release, but fans have all come prepared with fold out chairs, rain coats, windbreakers, snacks, and of course, their iPads and MacBooks in hand. The line didn’t stretch very far — just from the front of the Apple Store entrance to the corner of the same block with approximately 10 to 15 people in line. I stopped by yesterday to speak to some of the more committed fans, but found a different guy at the very front of the than what CNET has reported. Perhaps he was sitting in place of Hazem Sayed who was reportedly first to snag a spot on the line, and came to gain some publicity for his social media app Vibe.

“I’ve been here since Sunday,” John Mcintosh, the ironically-named temporary replacement for Sayed, says. This would make him behind third-in-line Jessica Mellow who USA Today reported has been there since Thursday. It might be possible that these guys are switching waiting shifts to alleviate the pain of sitting out in the windy weather, awaiting the New York storm due to arrive that night.

I spoke to an Apple Store representative who confirms there are no policies against fans waiting this early but they do not have plans to provide them with water, umbrellas, or shelter should the storm become wild.

Apple New York iPhone 5 line 3Many tourists stopped by the Apple Store for pictures with the die-hard fans, some requesting to sit in the first seat and hold up an iPad that reads “1st in line for iPhone 5” — a prop Sayed was also seen holding in coverages by other media outlets. For Mcintosh, he says the experience is a good way to get out of the house, do something different, and meet like-minded people who are as adventurous as he is. Unsurprisingly, Mcintosh is currently unemployed so the wait is a fun way to kill time and gain a bit of local publicity from passing tourists. “There’s a lot of cool people on line,” he says. “That’s really the best part.”

But is Mcintosh actually impressed with iPhone 5 so much so that the product drove him to wait almost a week before the product launched? “I don’t know, I guess we’ll see,” he says, noting that he may buy more than one and sell them if he finds that he doesn’t enjoy using the iPhone 5. Mcintosh currently does not own an iPhone but aims to buy the new Apple product under the Sprint network.

As for the impending storm slated to hit New York City that night? The young hopeful doesn’t seem too phased.

“Yeah, shucks,” he says. “I’m just gonna finally get a shower.”

[UPDATE 09/20/12]

I stopped by Wednesday afternoon to check up on how our brave souls fared over Tuesday night’s storm. This time, Hazem Sayed was back on the first seat still promoting Vibe and I got a chance to chat with Mellow who remained in her third place seat. 

“It rained really hard. Luckily, the night before it was raining we rented a car and parked it across the street,” Mellow says, snug in her down feather jacket and clutching her Kindle Fire. “We took turns holding down the tarps over everything and rotating off and on.”

Jessica Mellow iPhone 5 line

Mellow also said she offered a few people in line a spot in their rental car to shield from the rain, while others found shelter in the Apple Store — which is conveniently opened for 24 hours. Still, the storm did not faze the young freelance writer who said she’s been through worse waits previous years, offering this advice for those who are thinking about joining in on the Apple product release waiting experience.

“You have to be open-minded,” she says. “You have to be willing to take criticisms for it because we’re getting a lot of it. You have to go in with the mentality of having fun, participating in a tradition. It’s about the comradery; you meet new people and enjoy being part of something that most people won’t get the chance.”

Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix, from 'Haunting of Hill House’ to ‘Twilight Zone’

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Movies & TV

Ice meets fire in HBO's latest 'Game of Thrones' season 8 teaser

With the eighth and final season looming, Game of Thrones fever has officially become a pandemic. Our list of all the relevant news and rumors will help make the wait more bearable, if you don't mind spoilers.

Which new iPhone is the best? iPhone XS vs. iPhone XS Max vs. iPhone XR

Apple has three new iPhone models to choose from this year, making the choice a little harder than usual. What's the difference between the iPhone XS, the iPhone XS Max, and the iPhone XR, and which is best?
Home Theater

An acclaimed Apple analyst says the new AirPods are coming in 2019

Apple plans to release new AirPods much the same as it does new iPhones, and a wireless charging case, water resistance, and better Siri integration are among the improvements we can expect in future models.

Score a refurbished iPad Air for just $120 with this exclusive promo code

Apple deals are fleeting, but for techies who want to score this great hardware on the cheap, buying refurbished is the way to go. If you're in the market for a tablet, then you're in luck: This refurbished iPad Air is now on sale for just…

The Apple Watch Series 4's heart-monitoring ECG feature is now available

Apple officially unveiled the Apple Watch Series 4. From a larger display to a built-in electrical heart sensor, the latest device brings along some notable new features. Here's everything you need to know.

Microsoft Outlook for iOS gets big redesign, with Dark Mode coming soon

Microsoft has deployed a huge redesign for its Outlook for iOS app, which includes new blue branding and some quality-of-life improvements. Dark Mode isn't included, but it's coming soon.

Galaxy Watch vs. Apple Watch Series 4: Which one is the smartest?

The Samsung Galaxy Watch and the Apple Watch Series 4 are two of the best smartwatches available today. But which is better? We put the two watches head-to-head to find out which you should buy.

The best weather apps for the iPhone

Don't rely solely on your local meteorologist to stay up to date on the weather. Take matters into your own hands with one of these weather apps, each of which brings something unique to the table.

These are the 5 best free antivirus apps to protect your MacBook

Malware protection is more important than ever, even if you eschew Windows in favor of Apple's desktop platform. Thankfully, protecting your machine is as easy as choosing from the best free antivirus apps for Mac suites.

The best iPad deals for December 2018

In the wide world of tablets, Apple is still the king. If you're on team Apple and just can't live without iOS, we've curated an up-to-date list of all of the best iPad deals currently available for December 2018.

The best Apple Watch deals for December 2018

The Apple Watch has surged to prominence in recent years. If you're in the market for an iOS wearable, we've sniffed out the best Apple Watch deals available right now for all three models of this great smartwatch.

The best iPhone deals for December 2018

Apple devices can get expensive, but if you just can't live without iOS, don't despair: We've curated an up-to-date list of all of the absolute best iPhone deals available for December 2018.

5G’s arrival is transforming tech. Here’s everything you need to know to keep up

It has been years in the making, but 5G is finally becoming a reality. While 5G coverage is still extremely limited, expect to see it expand in 2019. Not sure what 5G even is? Here's everything you need to know.