iPhone Day


Is there anything more shaming than standing in queue for a phone? Well, yes. But as I’ve never been caught in a Nazi-themed sex orgy, this might have been near the top of the scale for me.

Apparently, the Optus store in Southland was opening at 8.00 am. Australians are lazy, I thought, and so I turned up at 7.30. Disappointingly, there was a queue of about 20 people. Even more disappointingly, the staff soon came out to the queue to inform us that there were no black 16 gb iPhones available. Well, I thought, I’ll just order a black one. I can wait.

After an hour of this ‘waiting’ thing — which might not have taken so long if Optus’ ordering system hadn’t broken down twice — my resistance to white had considerably evaporated. Some bloke had shown off his white one, and of looked quote nice. I used to like white things… It doesn’t look too shabby… I’ll never see the back anyhow… It was just as I was starting to convince myself that I’d happily take the white one that one of the Optus staff came out to inform us that there were only four of them left. There were five people in front of me. Sadly I bemoaned that even with a deposit I wouldn’t manage to get a phone.

“I don’t have a deposit.”

As it turned out, almost NO ONE had a deposit, making my opening gambit of not immediately asking “Who’s got a deposit” when I lined up particularly galling. Luckily, I had a few other queue members with deposits on my side, and we formed an alliance of sorts to beat the people in front of us to the 16gb phones. It was at this point that I started to feel like I was on a particularly nerdy version of Survivor. “They’ve been asking about deposits all day,” lies one hapless competitor.1 I make a mental note to kill her with whichever app on the iPhone decapitates people and makes it look like an accident.

Our new, smaller queue is formed, and I try not to make eye contact with those we’ve left behind. Mercifully we’re soon allowed in, and I’m given my phone. I open up my old phone to get the SIM card out, and blow dust all over the helpful customer service girl. It’s how we say “thank you” on my planet.

It’s a good little iPhone, too. People whinge about the keyboard, but as someone who never got the hang of T9, I’m light years faster than I used to be. The browsing is nifty, except when websites make their crappy “mobile” versions of sites which don’t offer all the capabilities of the real site.2 The second I need to actually go somewhere interesting, the Maps will be awesome. And the Facebook app is nifty, as one expects from something made by Joe ‘Firebug’ Hewitt.3

I finally have the One True Video iPod. All is right with the world.

  1. In fact, I think she was just confused about the difference between wanting a pre-paid phone and having a deposit.
  2. Presumably, the Google Calendar team have something far more interesting to do.
  3. He’s famous if you’ve done web work and like Firefox extensions.

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