The significance of the iPhone X and the return of Apple Store lines

Tripp Mickle, Wall Street Journal:

Long lines outside of Apple stores around the world showed strong initial demand for the new iPhone X, but analysts said the real test would be the company’s ability to sustain that level of interest over the coming months as it works through supply bottlenecks.

This really puzzles me. That word “but” in the middle of that paragraph. This good news followed by doomsaying seems so unnecessary.

Tim Cook said this on yesterday’s results call:

There’s always doubting Thomases out there and I’ve been hearing those for the 20 years I’ve been here and suspect I’ll hear about them until I retire. (laughs) I don’t really listen to that too much.

But I digress.

Sales of the iPhone X began Friday, and hundreds of customers lined up in Australia and Singapore, aiming to be among the first in the world to get their hands on the most expensive iPhone ever, with a starting price of $999 and features including an edge-to-edge display and a facial-recognition system.


At an Apple store in central Sydney, lines snaked around the corner midmorning local time, despite the store opening at 8 a.m., an hour earlier than usual, to cope with expected demand.

It’s been a while since we’ve seen these lines, and these are not isolated cases. At the very least, this shows a deep level of excitement for the iPhone X.

My take on the iPhone X is that it is not the latest iPhone, but the first in a brand new line of iPhones. So much new technology, wrapped in a new form factor, with its own uniquely tweaked interface. The return of these lines shows how excited people are to watch their beloved iPhones evolve into something new.

The fact that people are so motivated to get up, go to an Apple Store, and be part of the line-waiting social experience is a harbinger, not of doom, but of rebirth. Numbers, shmumbers. The iPhone X is already a huge win for Apple.