Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is getting plenty of attention today as it launches the iPhone 5S and 5C, and it is just eating the attention up. The lines for those who want to buy the handsets appear to be longer than ever before in many markets, but does this really mean that Apple will sell more phones?
Apple’s lines a marketing goldmine
Bloomberg West Editor-At-Large Cory Johnson reported from the line at the Apple Store flagship location in New York City. According to Johnson, the line wrapped all the way down 58th St., up Madison Ave., and down 59th St.
He said one of the things he noticed was that many of the people in the line there weren’t necessarily wanting to buy one of the two new iPhone models. Instead, he said they were simply trying to promote their own companies or products. However, he said most people generally seemed to be very excited about the new iPhones and to be standing in line to buy one of them. He said one of the people he spoke with waited in line for 13 days and was still second in line.
Are Apple’s lines nothing but “theater”?
Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster counted more than 1,400 people in line at the New York Apple store, and he believes that this means Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) will report very strong opening weekend numbers for its new iPhones. Of course we can’t forget that the company didn’t take preorders for the iPhone 5S, which means more people would be standing in line if they want the new phone on launch day.
Johnson notes that today’s launch is mostly a big marketing event for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). He saw Apple employees shooting video with cameras and working customers into excitement, like by getting them to scream when they came into the store. So with all of this “theater,” as it was called on Bloomberg Television, does it really mean Apple is selling a lot of iPhones this weekend?
According to Johnson, even though market research is a bit of an “unproven science,” most seem to believe that longer lines mean increased demand and that plenty of iPhones will be sold.