I’ll be covering, and likely participating in, an iPhone “campout” in the greater Seattle area Friday. Frankly, I’m curious to see how people make use of tech devices and online services to communicate during the event. And I’m curious to see who participates (the Mac faithful? iPod devotees, independent of platform? Buyers? People who just want to check one out?). If I actually manage to purchase an iPhone (rather than just order one) that would be nice, too.
The reason I’m hedging on making a promise to participate is that, in some cities, people are already camping outside stores in anticipation of the Friday, 6 p.m. product release. That’s not for me. I’ve selected what I hope will be a relatively low-key location in the Seattle area (so, not an Apple Store) and will be poised to take my place in line at 5 or 6 a.m. If there’s a line of 100 people around the block at that point, I’ll still have a story, but not a shopping expedition. If, by the dawn’s early light, the line is minimal, I’ll bivouac with a portable chair, a thermos, some energy bars, and all the necessary recording and communications gear.
Flickr groups for photos of campouts are being set up. Since the Apple Stores have wifi, expect lots of live reportage. Not sure what the AT&T locations will offer.
In Olympia, WA, a enterprising person has posted on Craig’s List offering to camp out in line for you. The hitch? You have to buy him/her an iPhone, too — complete with usage plan. (If the stores are limiting purchases to, say, one phone per customer, anyone involved in this deal could be in for quite a surprise.)
ADDED WEDNESDAY: I just received an email from AT&T inviting me to come buy an iPhone Friday. And it notes “limit one per person.” (Hmmm….shouldn’t there be a colon between “limit” and “one”?)