iPhone 3G S: They're Still Biting for Apple

The lines aren't as long, but echoes of iPhone frenzy linger

By Scott Budman
|  Friday, Jun 19, 2009  |  Updated 5:04 PM PDT
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iPhone 3G S: They're Still Biting for Apple

Worth buying, but not worth lining up for?

"Less insanity."

That's how one reporter described the iPhone 3G S's debut. That's probably the best way to put it.  Yes, even in today's recssionary times, a new -- even just sorta new -- iPhone is still something to get excited about, and plenty of people are shelling out $199-$299 to get their hands on one.  But the S isn't going to be anywhere near the game-changer that the original iPhone was, and the public seems resigned to that.

Late Friday we heard some new owners may have to wait up to two days to make calls.

The new phones have to be plugged into a computer and activated before calling, text messaging, or surfing the Web using the cellular data plan. Apple and AT&T servers are both involved in the process and people are being text that "process" could take 48 hours.

Back to the phone.  Let's also give credit to Apple and AT&T, the companeis hawking iPhones. By encouraging preorders instead of day-of-release purchases, they surrendered the attendant publicity from around-the-block lines. It may not make for sensational stories, but it sure is an easier day for all involved.

When I posted a "Who's buying an iPhone" query this morning on Twitter, almost every response I got was "Yes, can't wait.  So glad that I don't have to leave my house." Or, "It's on the way to my house right now, being driven to me by a truck."  Now, that's service.  Sitting at home, waiting for your new phone to arrive.  Kind of reminds me of the Harry Potter books. If you preordered on Amazon.com, they were delivered to your door.  No waiting in line, missing work, being the guy on the news with the scruffy two-day-old beard so you could get the latest must-have earlier than your coworker.

It's all so civilized, really.  Good for those of you who preordered, and good for Apple and AT&T for making it happen.

Scott Budman still wants to know who's waiting in line to buy. Hit him on Twitter@scottbudman

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