Canny companies try to hijack the hype around launch of new iPhone
COMPANIES AND charities have piggybacked on the hype surrounding Apple’s launch of the iPhone 5 by snapping up the first places in the queues in an effort to raise their profiles.
By lining up for days to ensure they were among the first to buy a phone, marketers and self-promoters have partially hijacked the media fervour that accompanies the launch of a new Apple gadget.
Overall, however, early sales of Apple’s iPhone 5 appeared to live up to the pre-launch hype, with shops in London, New York and Sydney and shops in Asia selling out of the latest smartphone within hours of its release.
Apple also sold two million new iPhones in the first 24 hours of the pre-order period, ahead of the retail launch.
At the head of the line at the Apple store on George Street in Sydney yesterday, employees from a price-comparison site attempted to hijack the launch and generate some free advertising.
One of the representatives from mobilephonefinder.com.auclaimed to have been waiting in line since Tuesday so that he could be the first person in the world to buy the new iPhone 5.
At Apple’s flagship London Regent Street store, one customer in the queue had been sponsored by Domino’s Pizza, and had received free pizzas over the past few days.
In New York many of the first people in the queues outside Apple’s flagship store were Occupy Wall Street protesters who had arrived late on Wednesday.
“They’re just opportunistic,” said one bystander. “They have iPhones themselves.”
In Singapore, the iPhone sold out in less than an hour at one of five approved outlets.
“It was very fast. I was expecting about the same as the launch of the iPhone 4, but this time round it got an even better response,” said Eric Wee, manager of the iStudio store near Raffles Place.
The enthusiasm came despite widespread complaints about the phone’s new mapping function, which misnamed towns, lost train stations and designated Dublin farm Airfield as an airport. – (Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2012)