Who knew that iPhone 7 mania would extend to Dubai? A serpentine line of people had formed outside the Apple store in Mall of Emirates in Dubai on Saturday, with customers eager to buy the new iPhone 7 and the bigger iPhone 7 Plus. Excited customers were lined up hours before the store opened to get their hands on the new iPhone 7, something that has never happened for the Samsung Galaxy S7 or Note 7 or any Galaxy smartphone for that matter.
Ahmad Al Hajri from Saudi Arabia was the first person to buy an iPhone 7 in Dubai, reports Gulf News. He couldn't contain his excitement. Ahmad further noted that he "slept at the mall. I like Apple and wanted to buy a 5.5–inch iPhone 7 Plus space grey, but had to sacrifice it for the 4.7–inch space grey (256GB). I am taking two phones."
He said that the advanced camera, faster processor and new Touch ID features forced him to buy the new device.
Apple's new iPhone models – 7 and 7 Plus – went on sale in the UAE at Apple Stores in Mall of the Emirates and Yas Mall on Saturday. Many walk-in customers were unable to get the iPhones they hoped for due to limited stocks, especially the new jet black iPhone.
The report also noted that each customer was limited to purchasing two iPhones. The iPhone 7 Plus, with its dual-lens rear camera, won the majority of pre-orders and walk-in customers, a reversal from previous years.
Ranjit Jose, a UAE-resident hailing from Kerala, was the first pre-booked customer to get his hands on the new device and the watch. "I was always been an Apple fan, right from the first iPhone. The kind of technological leap in every device, including design and the customer experience, made me buy Apple phones. This is the first time I am coming to an Apple Store. I am amazed by the live event and it was a great experience."
The report noted that "Industry experts said that Apple is benefiting from its rival Samsung's recall of the Galaxy Note 7 due to a spate of exploding batteries," but that's speculative at best. Apple is benefiting from delivering a solid new smartphone that Apple fans want and are excited about.
Those who choose the Samsung Note do so specifically because they want or need to use a smartpen for business apps or personal preferences. Apple's iPhone at present doesn't offer this feature. While Apple may be considering this feature down the road, at present LG has a modern smartphone with a pen that may be able to cash in on the Samsung Note recall, but Apple is unlikely to gain a single user because of it.
At the end of the day it was really cool to see and read about Apple fans in Dubai really excited over the new iPhone 7 this morning. It's just too bad that Apple doesn't have enough supply to give their fans what they want on day one. The iPhone 7 Plus in black and jet black are the big sellers at the moment. Here's to hoping that this will be a short lived bump in the road.
Apple's CEO Tim Cook on iPhone 7 Launch Day in the U.S.