Samsung wastes time and money on TV ads trying to bash Apples iPhone and yet races to copy Apple's next great thing at every turn. Yet what they can't copy is having passionate fans around the globe, willing to sleep for days outside Apple Stores just to be first in their city, State, Province and/or Country to own a shiny new smartphone. No, machines can't copy that. Today the iPhone 6 Plus, as noted in our cover graphic, begins its war march against the Galaxy Note 4. It will easily crush Samsung's product sales and wipe that smug smirk right off their collective faces. Today, jubilant Apple fans finally get to own the iPhone 6 that they've been reading about for months. Today is a great day!
Samsung, this is what a typical iPhone customer looks like when buying a new iPhone: Thrilled. This customer wasn't out to purchase a cheaper phone. This customer wanted to purchase the best phone with the best operating system, best App Store in the world and the best music store on the planet called iTunes. It's a holistic marvel.
Buyers from China, deprived of the latest iPhone launch at home, were on Friday among the first in line in Japan to grab the new iPhone 6 and its new large-screen cousin as Apple hit back at rivals.
A South Korean fan from Seoul Jin-Sik Kim spent days in front of the store before the doors opened, revealing scores of Apple employees in blue T-shirts. I guess the Samsung Note 4 just didn't cut it for Kim.
There were at least 1,000 people forming a line at the store in Tokyo, with dozens of media covering the launch.
"It's much thinner and lighter than I expected," Yuki Manno, who was one of the first people to buy the new gold iPhone 6 from the Omotesandō Apple Store.
Retailers in countries included in Apple's first wave of iPhone 6 release are seeing lines of keen customers, many of them reportedly from China, reports the state-owned China News Service.
At the Apple flagship store in Sydney, customers lining up to buy the latest generation of Apple's smartphone extended over 50 meters round the corner. Some took the opportunity to sell food and drinks to those waiting in line. Many in the line were from China, where the two new iPhone 6 models may not be released until next year.
In Brisbane, Apple stores had been encircled by customers while in Melbourne a queue of hundreds of people started to appear from the day before.
At the Richmond Centre Apple Store in Vancouver, Canada, the queuing started 63 hours before the official launch. A local Chinese resident surnamed Chen led his whole family, including cousins, and friends in the long wait for the store to open. There's a huge Chinese community in Vancouver and they'll likely be sending an iPhone to their friends or family back in China.
Fully prepared with drinking water, foldable chairs and tents, the Chen family stayed in the line for three nights. Chen said he loves Apple products so much he could not bear anyone getting the iPhone 6 before him.
Record numbers showed up on Friday morning at Apple's flagship store in Paris.
Around 600 people queued up for the kickoff of iPhone 6 sales, around 150 more than during the last sale, according to police officers.
"Apple customers wanted bigger screens and now they have finally done it," said Shane Gray, who had lined up for 15 hours on the sidewalk with his wife and young son. "You don't have to pinch and zoom with emails and Web pages."
According to market research firm Canalys, 5-inch-plus phablets grabbed a share of 40 percent in the global smartphone market in the second quarter of this year, nearly a two-fold growth compared to 21 percent a year ago.
As Apple's CEO Tim Cook reminded us all in his interview with Charlie Rose this past week, Apple wasn't first with an MP3 player, a smartphone or tablet but proved to be the best. Today Apple enters the Phablet sector. Samsung may have been first, but Apple's will definitely be better, and more importantly, likely take top spot in this category in the very near future.
For those standing in line at an Apple Store this morning waiting to get a new iPhone 6, I say Cheers! It's you, the dedicated Apple fan that makes each and every iPhone launch day so much fun.
(On the right we see Angela Ahrendts, senior vice president of retail and online stores at Apple Inc.)
Photo Credit for this report: Bloomberg
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