New iPhone Release Draws Crowds
WOODMERE, Ohio — Crowds formed outside of Cleveland-area Apple stores Friday in anticipation of the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C release.
The devices, which were first concealed by black curtains hanging in the windows, went on sale at 8 a.m.
When the curtain dropped, the DJ started playing and Apple employees gave high-fives to those waiting in line.
Small groups were allowed in the store to make their purchases.
Josh Eads, 28, of Garfield Heights, secured the first spot in line by claiming it Thursday morning.
Hours before the release, he told Fox 8 News he’s looking forward to the fingerprint scanner, calling it “James Bond-esk.”
The iPhone 5S is faster than its predecessor, and it features hardware upgrades like a beefed-up camera and a processor that measures motion data.
The new iPhones go on sale in the U.S., China and seven other countries Friday.
The crowd waiting for new iPhones is usually a mix of Apple diehards and more casual fans, plus people hoping to resell the devices for a profit. A few marketers are also on hand, hawking their wares to the masses waiting in line. Some people even pay line-sitters by the hour to grab an early spot.
And for the first time, Apple is offering two new iPhones: the flagship 5S and the cheaper, plastic iPhone 5C.
The iPhone 5S is similar in appearance to last year’s iPhone 5. The iPhone 5C comes in several different colors.
It’s not likely that everyone waiting in line will get an iPhone on Friday. Apple Stores usually have the most in stock, but they also draw the longest lines.
Retailers including Best Buy will also have the new iPhones, as will carriers AT&T, Verizon, Sprint and T-Mobile. But their inventory usually sells out more quickly.
But anyone who simply shows up Friday morning will probably find themselves at the back of the line. Apple zealots routinely pitch tents outside stores for days on end.
In London, 17-year-old Noah Green and his friends have been waiting outside the Regent Street Apple store since Monday night. They’ve been taking showers at a nearby gym, gulping down coffee and using an Apple-supplied umbrella to stay shielded from the rain.
Green said someone offered Green £300 (about $480) for his place in line. He turned them down but admitted he would sell his spot “if someone wants to offer the right price.”
So what would be the right price? “Ten thousand pounds,” Green said. “I know it sounds crazy, but people will pay that price.”
–By Julianne Pepitone, CNN
–CNN’s Stephanie Ott Contributed reporting from London
–Fox 8 News Contributed to this report