Economy

iPhone frenzy takes off

SmartCompany /

If you haven’t been able to get your hands on a 3G iPhone by the end of today – and let’s face it, that pretty well means you need to be in line right now – you could be in for a long wait.

If you haven’t been able to get your hands on a 3G iPhone by the end of today – and let’s face it, that pretty well means you need to be in line right now – you could be in for a long wait.

The customer response to the 3G iPhone’s release this morning was every bit as frenzied as expected, with long lines forming outside stores in Sydney and Melbourne from last night. And just in case you were hoping to nip in and get an iPhone later today, it appeared the lines outside at least some stockist’s stores were getting bigger after opening. At around 10am today there were still 400 people lining up outside Telstra’s main Sydney store and 100 people at an Optus store in the city.

“The response has been huge, far bigger than we’d anticipated,” Telstra spokesman Peter Taylor says. The most extreme reaction from a customer? One female buyer cried when she got her iPhone.

Exactly how many iPhones are in Australia is not clear, with Apple refusing to reveal how many 3G iPhones it has released into Australia and participating telcos Optus, Telstra and Vodafone being similarly coy.  But all were emphasising that stocks are tight – Vodafone says it has already sold thousands of iPhones through its online channel – and the signs are there will be few, if any, iPhones available after today.

Until, that is, Apple brings more iPhones into Australia. Apple is also not saying when that will occur, but spokesmen for both Telstra and Vodafone said they anticipate receiving more stock sometime around the end of the month.

And even then you may still have to line up, given analyst estimates that around 250,000 Australians want an iPhone. Of course, consumers aren’t the only ones generating iPhone hype – plenty of businesses are getting on board to.

Stockbroker Commsec took out full page newspaper ads today telling people about its new iPhone friendly online broking portal, while News Ltd announced the launch of iPhone optimised versions of its news.com.au, truelocal.com.au and moshtix.com.au sites. Fairfax also has a version of its domain.com.au for the iPhone.

And tech bloggists over the globe are rushing to get out their reviews of the iPhone – we’ve assembled a collection of the best. See iPhone reviews are in.

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