iPhone launch unsuccessful?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by anthonyb, Jul 27, 2008.

  1. anthonyb macrumors member

    Aug 14, 2007
    So for starters, let me say that I am an avid fan of Apple products and feel that they are a very successful and strong company. But lately with this iPhone 3G launch, I have been having concerns.

    I currently live in the US in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania and our city is a pretty nice size. We have a nice size technical underbelly due to local colleges such as Carnegie Mellon University. So the demand for a product such as the iPhone is definitely there.

    So onto what this is all about, I am really concerned with the way that Apple has been handling the launch of their new product. It really seems like the launch, in my opinion, was unsuccessful.

    Unsuccessful for these reasons:
    1. I feel that Apple had to give in and make the decision to try and deter the jailbreak/unlock crowd by having all customers register their phone in the store. Not only was this a huge problem with the fact that it took too long, but the server during the launch could not handle the load. Also, due to the fact that people who was not entering a traditional contract with AT&T, they could not buy a phone, and then take it to AT&T to register it.

    2. AT&T stock shortages. I realize that this is an Apple product, so they wanted to keep stocks in their stores. I also realize that this phone was launched in 22 countries so that is a pretty tall order to fill. But its not like there was not ample time to prepare for this launch. I feel that there would be numbers and sales reports from the previous launch to get a good feel to what type of stocks they need to provide to stores.

    There are stores here in Pittsburgh that had only gotten 30 phones. Considering that there were people waiting in line before the store opened and businesses that were trying to get this product, this number was extremely low. It also seems that AT&T has now had to take a stand and take fulfillment orders. Is the stock either that low? Or is it just a high demand?

    How is Apple going to handle selling the phone in a month in another 20something countries

    3. Why is it so difficult to find an accurate measure of how many phones are in stock at Apple and AT&T stores? Do they not realize that if they were to just provide accurate stock orders on a website the companies would save alot of time and money not having employees answering phones nonstop. Now I know that Apple provides their "Nightly" stock availability, but It is never accurate, and you always call the store before you head down anyways. AT&T has nothing of the sort, so atleast Apple has something.

    4. (unrelated) Seems that mobileME didnt launch all that well either. Maybe it was too much trying to launch at once?

    Overall I just really think it could have gone a little bit better. Maybe they could have given a priority to current phone subscribers or possibly dont roll out too many countries all at once. I know neither of these ideas are good at all, but its all I got.

    By all means I totally agree that the iPhone is years ahead of the cellphone market. I still dont have my phone and is currently riding the fulfillment ride. Is anyone currently on the same page as me? Anyone feel the same? Or am I just ranting? Thoughts?
  2. GNice macrumors 6502

    Aug 7, 2007
    One could argue that much of what you said is testament to the success of the iPhone launch. I'm not making that argument, just offering a counterpoint. The launch has had it rough spots for sure, but many product manufacturers would like to have a launch go so "badly". :D
  3. newyorksole macrumors 68040

    Apr 2, 2008
    New York.
    Yeah it was a little rocky, but hey, always room for improvement.
  4. skubish macrumors 68030


    Feb 2, 2005
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    Well Apple has already sold more 3G iPhones then all of the original iPhones combined and the original iPhone was deemed pretty successful.
    Apple is already #2 for smartphones in North America.

    I guess I would like to have some of that kool aid you're drinking.
  5. anthonyb thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 14, 2007
    Yes I totally agree. Companies pay piles of cash promoting their product and dont get anywhere near the success Apple does.

    You cant put a price on the publicity Apple has received due to people standing outside. If anything, it just makes people want the product more. Lets just hope they are doing all they can to fulfill orders and not going the other route and taking a page from the Nintendo playbook.
  6. packetjunkie macrumors regular

    Jul 15, 2008
    Have you ever tried to manufacture a million of anything and get it too your distributors on a daily basis?
  7. newyorksole macrumors 68040

    Apr 2, 2008
    New York.
    Yeah it's amazing how Apple continues to have lines at most if not all stores and people walk by wondering "Wow these people are either crazy or Apple put out a great product." Which ends up in more iPhone sales and more Apple publicity.
  8. joebokeh macrumors member

    Jul 11, 2008
    an unsuccessful launch means you sold 1 unit and you have 5 million left...
  9. anthonyb thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 14, 2007
    No, but Apple has in the past, successfully.
  10. neiltc13 macrumors 68040


    May 27, 2006
    Cry me a river dude, come to towns and cities here where stores got units in single digits on the first day.
  11. anthonyb thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 14, 2007
    This should never be like this. Single units is just ridiculous.
  12. richg916 macrumors regular

    Jul 26, 2008
    I would say it is successful... they are making you really want one right now aren't they?
  13. anthonyb thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 14, 2007
    Yes they are, sleepless nights indeed. HA

    But I was sold that I wanted this product before the launch. I should be able to walk in and pick one up that evening like you could with the previous launch.
  14. Flhusky macrumors 6502a


    Aug 28, 2007
    Item 1 was a disaster waiting to happen, they had similar issues with the original launch so I will agree that was a double black eye and full nelson.

    Item 2 contradicts your unsuccessful theory. They knew from past experiences what could happen. I'd bet they factored in a low/mid 2 digit % increase and hoped for the best.
    People in line(still) 2 weeks after a product launched = demand
    We shall see, I'd expect the same results in those 20 countries.

    Item 3 I've never seen another cellphone manufacture provide this information. From the get go it was spotty information. I'd agree it was a kick to the family jewels as far as the launch goes.

    item 4 Is just a total embarrassment, .mac/.me is over priced for what it offers. BUT its marketed well and people like simple point and click things.

    I feel over all it was a 'B' effort.
  15. thor79 macrumors 6502


    Jun 8, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Do lots of people have iPhone 3G's? Yes
    Are lots of people waiting for their iPhone 3G's to be delivered? Yes
    Are lots of people still waiting in lines to try to get an iPhone on a daily basis? Yes

    Is demand for the product going to die anytime soon? Not likely.

    I'd say it was a hell of a successful launch. Not a smooth launch by any means...but it was successful.
  16. Sobe macrumors 68000


    Jul 6, 2007
    Wash DC suburbs
    Considering that a year ago, Apple had zero presence in the mobile phone industry, I would say it was an absolute complete success.

    That shouldn't be confused with perfection by any means; but, by any reasonable measure it is a truly enormous success what Apple has done over the last year in entering this market.
  17. MasonMI macrumors regular

    Oct 27, 2007
    I'd have to agree, theres a huge demand for the iphone and with the launch in other countries besides the US supplies are thin, theres been lines daily at most Apple stores that should say something about the iphone 3G success. like many others i ordered mine through AT&T DF order program a week ago and i'm still waiting to get my 16GB 3G in black.
  18. DiamondMac macrumors 68040


    Aug 11, 2006
    Washington, D.C.
    Depends on what exactly we are talking about

    If we are talking about Apple and the cell-phone market, I would consider their last two launches to be massive successes. Hard to argue other wise, imo

    If we are talking about the problems such as shortages, slow activations for days, no activations for hours, etc....I would say Apple could do better but still successful
  19. Opie macrumors 6502a


    Jun 17, 2008
    I believe it was a hit. There is not and iphone to be found. My AT&T store has over a hundred people who ALREADY PAID and are waiting on a 3g. And thats just here in a small city like shreveport. I would say they have done well.
  20. anthonyb thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 14, 2007
    So today finally came. My iPhone had been shipped to my local AT&T store ready to be picked up. Or so I thought... Got all the way down there after work only to find out that their computer "system" was down and there was nothing they could do about it.

    They didnt even know if/when it was going to come back up and I should call tomorrow to see if I can come in and pick up the phone I already paid for.

  21. marksman macrumors 603


    Jun 4, 2007
    If by unsuccessful you mean amazingly succesful then yes I agree.

    Having lines every day 2+ weeks after launch because of demand, even though you prepared for a massive launch, is pretty impressive.
  22. FJR macrumors regular

    Jul 21, 2008
    Have they ever sold a million of something like the iPhone in the first 3 days it was available?

    They've never sold a million macbooks that fast. RIM has never sold a million blackberries in 3 days.

    I think you should just accept that selling a device like the iPhone this fast is unprecedented. There are going to be bumps.

    I venture to say if apple had sold as many 3Gs as they did original iPhones last time, there wouldn't be 1/2 the issues.
  23. illidian macrumors 6502

    Mar 27, 2008
    Cincinnati, OH
    Do you realize how many AT&T and Apple stores there are littered throughout only the United States?

    Apple's current production and distribution is on a massive scale. The iPhone is a success.
  24. BOSS10L macrumors 6502a

    Jan 13, 2008
    Upstate NY
    So basically if I undestand this thread correctly, the OP is tying the success (or lack thereof) of the early part of this launch to the fact that he and some others don't have their phones yet?

    This is no different than any other hot product launch. You don't even have to look at consumer electronics products, but we'll glance at them first because they're the closest 'relatives' to the iPhone. Wii anyone? Sure, there are millions that have them, but they are still in very short supply, almost 2 years after the initial launch. Does this mean Nintendo has faltered? Hell no, they're selling the things faster than they can make them. And the same holds true for the iPhone.

    Look to the automotive industry. Granted, things have changed somewhat with the astronomical gas pricing, but I can remember very vividly people paying through the nose for special vehicles. One local dealer was getting well over 10K more than MSRP for the redesigned Ford Thunderbird when it was re-released. Some people were paying twice that ammount to get their hands on the new Shelby GT500 when it came out.

    No manufacturer, it doesn't matter if they make iPhones or paperclips wants to have stock sitting in warehouses or on trucks. They want them in stores, or preferably, in the hands of customers. This is what is happening with the iPhone. Apple and AT&T have hit upon that magic price threshold where the general public is willing to come out in droves to purchase. It doesn't matter that they're actually paying more for the phone in the long run, people are enamored with the lower up-front cost.

    I happened to get VERY, VERY lucky this past weekend and scored a white 16GB. But I didn't leave my home until I knew they had some in stock, and if they were sold out when I got there, I would have waited for the rush to die down. People seem to forget that the 3G was just released 17 days ago. Kids are off from school, parents are off from work more than usual, students are home from universtity.

    It'll all die down soon enough, and then just about anyone can walk into an Apple or AT&T store and get one without any hassle. In the meantime, Apple is doing a fantastic job as always. The more iPhones that make it out into the wild, the better our chances of seeing even more innovation out of Cupertino.
  25. oftheheavens macrumors 68000

    Jul 9, 2008
    cherry point
    lets see 1 million iphones in 3 days.....that is so unsuccessful. poor :apple:

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