General comment about launch one month later

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by rdstoll, Aug 11, 2008.

  1. rdstoll macrumors 6502

    Jul 15, 2008
    Still amazing to see small lines outside Apple stores pretty much everywhere, waiting to get their hands on the new iPhone 3g. I got mine a few days after launch and had to spend 4 hours from start to finish, and went with a buddy this past weekend and spent another 2 hours to get the phone with him.

    While there is no doubt this launch could have been handled better by Apple and AT&T (better supply management, more seamless activation process) I am 100% convinced these lines could have been avoided if the people in these lines were even remotely prepared for the process. From Day 1 AT&T has had a one-page sheet on their website detailing everything you need to buy an iPhone; how to port a number, all of the various plan details and pricing, text package pricing, as well as the activation charges and such. Yet from all the time I spent in line, I was amazed to see that at least 2/3 of the people there had little to no clue what they were doing and knew nothing about the special iPhone plans, meaning that the salespeople had to explain everything in great detail and then wait for the customer to ponder what he or she was going to do. Once we got in the store this past weekend, my buddy was able to buy the phone and port his number over from US Cellular in seven minutes flat. It was that easy because he knew exactly what plans he wanted and had all the info he needed to port his number over. You would not believe how grateful the salesperson was that he didn't have to explain all the plans - he said that probably 90% of the people he dealt with had done zero prep work ahead of coming in to the store.

    It's very easy to blame companies and what not for the long lines and messy activation, but I also believe that these lines could be completely avoided if people took 10 minutes to prepare themselves prior to coming to the store. It was save them - and everyone behind them - a lot of time.
  2. cjandnw macrumors 6502

    Jun 11, 2007
    South Jersey
    The people I was in line with on launch day all knew what they wanted. The Apple employees came out an hour before and explained the process and handed out the plan info. This was the "1 page" you speak of.

    I knew what I wanted. I was coming from am OG iphone to a 3G iphone.
    What noone knew was:

    FAN discount could not be handled at Apple. (We did know that corporate or business accounts had to be done at AT&T) but many had FAN discounts on personal accounts.

    The poor ability for Apple's computers to talk to AT&T's computers and crashing the systems multiple times.

    The simultaneous release of Mobile me, 2.0 and iPhone 3G. WTF

    All of the planning on the part of the consumer would have had minimal if any effect on the DAY 1 launch.

    Flash back to June 29, 2007. It took me 5 minutes to buy 2 iPhones and maybe 15 minutes to activate it when I got home.

    Apple and AT&T's inability to seemlessly communicate, the servers inability to handle the simultaneous activations, downloads etc. combined with the lack of knowledge of the FAN issue were responsible for 99% of the launch fiasco.
  3. Sonicjay macrumors 6502a


    Jan 1, 2008
    Sorry, but 200 people don't fit in a small retail store at the same time; there will be lines. Also, at the apple store I was at on launch day, there were mutliple Apple employes going through the line making sure everybody was "iReady" well before the doors unlocked.
  4. PAH Mac macrumors member

    Jun 10, 2008
    Yeah, I guess most people have no clue. When I got mine about a week after launch, There were a dozen or so people waiting in line and apple employees came out on 3 separate occasions to see if anyone wanted to look over rate plan info and to make absolutely sure that anybody who had a corporate discount called at&t to have this temporarily disabled (I guess apple can't deal with these discounts in store). Despite all this, one of the first guys in line had a corporate discount still active and ended up freezing the system up for everybody else. I think this was the big advantage of the at-home activation.
  5. DavidMc macrumors member

    Aug 13, 2007
    My brother spent most of his Launch day in line at a local AT&T store and missed it by 8 or so people. He did a DF and got it a week or so later. This passed Saturday I went into our 1 and only Apple store. It was crowded but there were no lines. I checked out a white one and then moved to a less crowded table to check out a black one. An employee came over to me and when I asked if they had any he answered like they have had them in stock for weeks. About 25 mins later I was out the door with a 16gb black on a new line (want to make sure there are not reception far not so good) and a Incase sleeve that doesn't fit right. This is the Norfolk, VA store.

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