Smartphone Fans Get Hands on New iPhone 5
WESTLAKE, Ohio – iPhone 5 mania hit Northeast Ohio.
iPhone fanatics lined up outside of the Apple stores at Crocker Park and Legacy Village well before the new smartphone went on sale at 8 a.m. Friday.
R.J. Wagner was the first in line at Crocker Park.
“Originally I was gonna pre-order it, but decided I had to be the very first person to get that thing handed to me in my hand,” said Wagner. “This thing is beautiful. It’s something else.”
With over two million preorders backed up for weeks, scores of people camped outside of stores from Chicago to New York to avoid the wait.
A London man even offered to sell his spot in line for $1,000 with the money going to charity.
In Crocker Park, people started lining up around dinner time Thursday and some spent the night sleeping on the sidewalk. Employees got to work early at 4 a.m. There were about 60 people in line three hours later.
Long lines were still forming at 9 a.m.
Mike Stasek, the manager of the Verizon store in Independence, said what makes the new phone so special is that it runs on a new 4G LTE network.
That means super fast data speeds and downloads with a battery that will last up to 12 hours.
The phone, which is longer (4 inches diagonally), thinner and 20 percent lighter than past models also has a faster processor and the new iOS6 operating system.
That is Apple’s latest and greatest operating system with access to 700,000 apps.
“It has 200 new features,” said Stasek.
With a service plan, the price of the phone ranges from $199 for a 16 gigabyte base model to $299 for 32 GB and $399 for 64 GB.
Without a service plan, the prices are $649, $749 and $849.
Initial sales of the phone exceeded two million units within the first day, setting a new sales record, and pre-ordered devices are back ordered from two to five weeks.
iPhone customers said the only drawback to the iPhone 5 is the new charging cable which is a new design and not compatible with other Apple plugs, cords and charging devices.
People will have to purchase a separate adapter to make the phone work with their other Apple equipment.
But people waiting in line said it’s all worth it, even if that meant sleeping on a sidewalk.
“I got a lot of shows saved up on Netflix. I’ll catch up them and take a nap,” said Ryan Harvey. “I have to work in the morning.”
After only a few hours with his new phone, Wagner noticed the difference in quality and said he’s been waiting to get it in his hands.
“They make everything so much easier,” said Wagner.