It’s worth the hell

Apple continues to amaze. I’ve never seen a company have a technical meltdown in front of the eyes of the world the way Apple did today. Yet when my son got out of the store after three hours of hell inside the store (we were snuck to the front of the line by someone who gave us cuts so that we could be among the first to get one, so that we could document what it was like for him to walk into the store and be #1 — he waited for two days) he said he still loved Apple and still loved his 3G iPhone.

After playing with it today I’ve got to agree. This is the company that can give you a crappy camera. No video. Charge you more than other devices. Make you wait hours in line. Take hours to get your credit card approved, your iPhones activated. And, at the end of it all, make you feel good.

I’ve been comparing the iPhone 3G to my Nokia N82 and N95 and my Microsoft Mobile-powered Samsung Blackjack II cell phones and, again, the iPhone kicks ass.

The App Store is simply brilliant. The new things available for the iPhone are just years ahead of other phones. The experience of using an iPhone is just way ahead of even the best Nokia and Microsoft phones (although I met with both companies recently and don’t expect them to let Apple have all the fun for long).

It’s worth the hell. Apple and AT&T will do just fine after fixing all the bugs that caused today’s debacle.

That said, no other company in the world has so much brand love in reserve that it can get this reaction. Any other company in the world would have seen riots after it took more than an hour to process even a portion of the first group of 20 people to enter the store.

VentureBeat has the video of the ‘iPocolypse.”

Unbelieveable.

It’s worth the hell.

What do you think?

132 thoughts on “It’s worth the hell

  1. It is not a question of IF I will buy one, but when. Lets see. It is sleeker, faster, lighter, and louder (I have a hearing problem) .. not to mention the App store. My only question is whether I sell the old one on ebay or give it to a family member who has some other brand of phone. I am delighted with the software upgrade alone. A previous upgrade complicated my listening to voicemail messages in my bluetooth equipped car .. and Apple removed that complication. I can’t believe it.
    Jobs and company are the Alexander Graham Bell and Thomas Edison of my generation.

  2. How fast is it really? none of this 2 x faster than the old one nonsense. Can you connect it to your laptop and use as a modem? At what sort of speeds? Anything less than 1.5mbps is going to be super crap compared to a simple O2 Atom Life on WM6

  3. How fast is it really? none of this 2 x faster than the old one nonsense. Can you connect it to your laptop and use as a modem? At what sort of speeds? Anything less than 1.5mbps is going to be super crap compared to a simple O2 Atom Life on WM6

  4. Did I hear right? Someone gave you and your son “cuts”? man, I would have given you a pice of my mind if I had ben waiting all day and you snuck in. How rude.

  5. Did I hear right? Someone gave you and your son “cuts”? man, I would have given you a pice of my mind if I had ben waiting all day and you snuck in. How rude.

  6. I agree — it was worth it. I was the #15 in line here in Kansas City. I showed up at 10:40′ish PM on Thursday night — 10 hours of waiting in line and a 1 hour nap on a concrete sidewalk.

    I also video blogged my entire experience, even inside the Apple store.

    Watch it here:

  7. I agree — it was worth it. I was the #15 in line here in Kansas City. I showed up at 10:40′ish PM on Thursday night — 10 hours of waiting in line and a 1 hour nap on a concrete sidewalk.

    I also video blogged my entire experience, even inside the Apple store.

    Watch it here:

  8. My experience was that I waited in line for four hours yesterday and got nothing out of it. I can understand the activation server problems — I’m a software engineer, so I understand the difficulty in keeping such a service live. I’m not mad about that, but what really pisses me off is Apple’s poor integration with AT&T. There was a problem with my AT&T account that Apple couldn’t see. So I had to go to an AT&T store. They sent me back to Apple. I called AT&T, and they basically said there’s a communication bug between their service and Apple’s service, and the result is Apple can’t sell me an iPhone. I’ve documented the entire process and what went wrong at iPhkd: http://iphkd.blogspot.com/. Anyone else been blocked by AT&T?

  9. My experience was that I waited in line for four hours yesterday and got nothing out of it. I can understand the activation server problems — I’m a software engineer, so I understand the difficulty in keeping such a service live. I’m not mad about that, but what really pisses me off is Apple’s poor integration with AT&T. There was a problem with my AT&T account that Apple couldn’t see. So I had to go to an AT&T store. They sent me back to Apple. I called AT&T, and they basically said there’s a communication bug between their service and Apple’s service, and the result is Apple can’t sell me an iPhone. I’ve documented the entire process and what went wrong at iPhkd: http://iphkd.blogspot.com/. Anyone else been blocked by AT&T?

  10. “The new things available for the iPhone are just years ahead of other phones.”

    Could you elaborate on this a bit?

  11. “The new things available for the iPhone are just years ahead of other phones.”

    Could you elaborate on this a bit?

  12. I actually had a very smooth transaction yesterday. I went to the AT&T store as I have a discount through work and they had 15 terminals and each person was taking about 15 min. to get through. I was about 100th in line and got there at 7:00 a.m. and was done by 9:30 a.m.. I love the phone so far too! I had an HTC wizard and loved it 3 yrs ago, but the iPhone beats it by leaps and bounds.

  13. I actually had a very smooth transaction yesterday. I went to the AT&T store as I have a discount through work and they had 15 terminals and each person was taking about 15 min. to get through. I was about 100th in line and got there at 7:00 a.m. and was done by 9:30 a.m.. I love the phone so far too! I had an HTC wizard and loved it 3 yrs ago, but the iPhone beats it by leaps and bounds.

  14. The iPhone 3G IS worth the hell.

    But I am waiting a couple of days so that the experience of getting another iPhone will be smoother.

    Getting an iPhone means entering the iPhone Ecosystem. It is the Ecosystem which is extremely difficult for RIMM, Nokia, Sony, Microsoft, Google to compete against.

    With the iPhone 3G purchase, I will now get more accessories for it – such as a case, etc. What other phone has a multibillion dollar accessory market for it?

    With the iPhone 3G, I will now download movies and music to it. What other phone has such an extensive movie and music business for it?

    With the iPhone 3G, I can easily get new Applications to extend its functionality and have more fun. What other phone allows this? Furthermore, the development tools are free. With Nokia, RIMM and others, it costs up to and more than $5000 to write applications for the platform. Further, they take 50% of the developer’s price for the apps. Apple gives the tools away for free and takes only a 30% cut, giving developers the larger piece of profit.

    With the iPhone 3G, I can more easily work with my Macintosh and PC with MobileMe and ITunes software, etc. It is now even the remote control for iTunes and AppleTV. Soon, it may be the ultimate remote control for the house and its electronics. What phone offers this possibility?

    With the iPhone 3G, I can have Apple’s exclusive iPhone connectors for my BMW and other cars. What other phone can do this?

    With the iPhone 3G, I can now work with big business IT’s Microsoft Exchange systems and have push email via Exchange or MobileMe. What other phone can do this – and all the others above?

    Once you get used to typing on the glass screen of the iPhone, you will realize how much easier and faster to type on it versus a tiny mechanical thumb keyboard. I write much longer emails and text messages on the iPhone than on other phones. My friends have to use abbreviations. I use full sentences with punctuation.

    No other phone can compete with the iPhone’s Juggernaut Ecosystem. This is why they will get rolled over.

  15. The iPhone 3G IS worth the hell.

    But I am waiting a couple of days so that the experience of getting another iPhone will be smoother.

    Getting an iPhone means entering the iPhone Ecosystem. It is the Ecosystem which is extremely difficult for RIMM, Nokia, Sony, Microsoft, Google to compete against.

    With the iPhone 3G purchase, I will now get more accessories for it – such as a case, etc. What other phone has a multibillion dollar accessory market for it?

    With the iPhone 3G, I will now download movies and music to it. What other phone has such an extensive movie and music business for it?

    With the iPhone 3G, I can easily get new Applications to extend its functionality and have more fun. What other phone allows this? Furthermore, the development tools are free. With Nokia, RIMM and others, it costs up to and more than $5000 to write applications for the platform. Further, they take 50% of the developer’s price for the apps. Apple gives the tools away for free and takes only a 30% cut, giving developers the larger piece of profit.

    With the iPhone 3G, I can more easily work with my Macintosh and PC with MobileMe and ITunes software, etc. It is now even the remote control for iTunes and AppleTV. Soon, it may be the ultimate remote control for the house and its electronics. What phone offers this possibility?

    With the iPhone 3G, I can have Apple’s exclusive iPhone connectors for my BMW and other cars. What other phone can do this?

    With the iPhone 3G, I can now work with big business IT’s Microsoft Exchange systems and have push email via Exchange or MobileMe. What other phone can do this – and all the others above?

    Once you get used to typing on the glass screen of the iPhone, you will realize how much easier and faster to type on it versus a tiny mechanical thumb keyboard. I write much longer emails and text messages on the iPhone than on other phones. My friends have to use abbreviations. I use full sentences with punctuation.

    No other phone can compete with the iPhone’s Juggernaut Ecosystem. This is why they will get rolled over.

  16. Hi Robert,

    you are using all these mobile phones but I find it kind of interesting that you never talk about the BlackBerry. You wrote once that you had a BlackBerry and loved it the days back then.

    How about today? Why are you not with any BlackBerry devices? Or are you secretly carrying one around with you? Or is it because you “have given up” on email?

    Maybe you can write about post about that, especially now with the discussion about the iPhone 3G vs. some of the new BlackBerry models (i.e. the Bold)

    Bernhard

  17. Hi Robert,

    you are using all these mobile phones but I find it kind of interesting that you never talk about the BlackBerry. You wrote once that you had a BlackBerry and loved it the days back then.

    How about today? Why are you not with any BlackBerry devices? Or are you secretly carrying one around with you? Or is it because you “have given up” on email?

    Maybe you can write about post about that, especially now with the discussion about the iPhone 3G vs. some of the new BlackBerry models (i.e. the Bold)

    Bernhard

  18. It’s disappointing that they screwed this up so bad, but this is exactly why I said i would not even think about getting a phone in the first couple days. I have learned my lesson over and over…. not just with Apple, but in all things tech. Early adopters pay the price for high tech complexity.

  19. It’s disappointing that they screwed this up so bad, but this is exactly why I said i would not even think about getting a phone in the first couple days. I have learned my lesson over and over…. not just with Apple, but in all things tech. Early adopters pay the price for high tech complexity.

  20. Let’s all take a moment to thank our lucky stars that our idea of “hell” is being in an Apple Store with a non-functioning cellular telephone for a few hours.

  21. Let’s all take a moment to thank our lucky stars that our idea of “hell” is being in an Apple Store with a non-functioning cellular telephone for a few hours.

  22. Obamasama: I’ve had an iPhone for a year now. This new phone is still pretty much the same, just faster and with GPS. So, I can say with great authority that it’s worth the hell.

  23. Obamasama: I’ve had an iPhone for a year now. This new phone is still pretty much the same, just faster and with GPS. So, I can say with great authority that it’s worth the hell.

  24. Robert Scoble, what a shame that you actually said it’s worth the hell. Are you sure? How long have you been using the iphone? how long do you really get to know if a gadget is performing well for what its features are designed for. Just when you left the store? your first day owning it?
    Can you you say it’s worth the hell on your first day owning it?
    pls post again whether it’s really “worth the hell” one month from now.

  25. Robert Scoble, what a shame that you actually said it’s worth the hell. Are you sure? How long have you been using the iphone? how long do you really get to know if a gadget is performing well for what its features are designed for. Just when you left the store? your first day owning it?
    Can you you say it’s worth the hell on your first day owning it?
    pls post again whether it’s really “worth the hell” one month from now.

  26. I am in Canada, and contrary to what Jeremy said, teh plans are not really that bad, as long as you dont go with the iphone specific plans. I used to be a Crackberry user but made the iPhone switch today after 4 hours in line and then activating at home. It is an unbelievable device, email to me seems simlar to that on the berry, however you do get a better Gmail interface and i am going to presume exchange inteface from how it seems. And I have the ability to play back powerpoints, something that is oddly important for me and i couldnt do on my Curve. Still this launch was bad, not only did Apple go down but in Canada the Rogers’ activation/upgrade network crashed for about 6 hours. If you add up the 6 million current iphones, the millions of ipod touches and possible millions of new iphones you are looking at a giant amount of devices trying to upgrade through itunes. You’d figure that Apple would take teh time to ensure their system would handle that.

  27. I am in Canada, and contrary to what Jeremy said, teh plans are not really that bad, as long as you dont go with the iphone specific plans. I used to be a Crackberry user but made the iPhone switch today after 4 hours in line and then activating at home. It is an unbelievable device, email to me seems simlar to that on the berry, however you do get a better Gmail interface and i am going to presume exchange inteface from how it seems. And I have the ability to play back powerpoints, something that is oddly important for me and i couldnt do on my Curve. Still this launch was bad, not only did Apple go down but in Canada the Rogers’ activation/upgrade network crashed for about 6 hours. If you add up the 6 million current iphones, the millions of ipod touches and possible millions of new iphones you are looking at a giant amount of devices trying to upgrade through itunes. You’d figure that Apple would take teh time to ensure their system would handle that.

  28. Sat without a phone from 8am-noon today as my 9mo. old iPhone stumbled through its upgrade to 2.0. Worth the wait and inconvenience? Absolutely. First thing I did was link to the our corporate Exchange server. Took a whopping 60 seconds. Had to chuckle at the fact that linking the iPhone to Exchange was 3x easier than when I wrestled with hooking up my old Windows Mobile to Exchange in 2007 (certificate hell). Apple beating Microsoft at the Exchange connectivity game. Amusing.

  29. Sat without a phone from 8am-noon today as my 9mo. old iPhone stumbled through its upgrade to 2.0. Worth the wait and inconvenience? Absolutely. First thing I did was link to the our corporate Exchange server. Took a whopping 60 seconds. Had to chuckle at the fact that linking the iPhone to Exchange was 3x easier than when I wrestled with hooking up my old Windows Mobile to Exchange in 2007 (certificate hell). Apple beating Microsoft at the Exchange connectivity game. Amusing.

  30. Apple has lunched a great product and that’s the bottom line. Instinct from sprint can’t get close to apple’s iPhone (i experienced both) the state-of-art from apple has no competition whatsoever….

  31. Apple has lunched a great product and that’s the bottom line. Instinct from sprint can’t get close to apple’s iPhone (i experienced both) the state-of-art from apple has no competition whatsoever….

  32. Ethan: I didn’t cut in line. I was invited. You must have missed that last year I did the same thing for Dave Winer and Steve Gillmor (I bought them phones and they didn’t need to wait in line).

  33. Ethan: I didn’t cut in line. I was invited. You must have missed that last year I did the same thing for Dave Winer and Steve Gillmor (I bought them phones and they didn’t need to wait in line).

  34. Christ. The lines. The snafus. The total chaos inside the store, watching half the geniuses on the phone with ATT or whoever trying to troubleshoot, etc.

    And yeah, it was worth it. The biggest surprise to me (so far)? How beautiful the new iPhone is (at least the white one, which I have). It feels great. It looks great. And it just seems to work “better” than the 1.0 iPhone. Not sure what it is about it.

  35. Christ. The lines. The snafus. The total chaos inside the store, watching half the geniuses on the phone with ATT or whoever trying to troubleshoot, etc.

    And yeah, it was worth it. The biggest surprise to me (so far)? How beautiful the new iPhone is (at least the white one, which I have). It feels great. It looks great. And it just seems to work “better” than the 1.0 iPhone. Not sure what it is about it.

  36. “After three hours of trying to update my old phone, I was too bummed out to go to Burlingame. But I wrote to my personal shopper there, and she says there are plenty available so tomorrow is my day :-)”

    She has three hours to kill updating their phone. When she can’t be one of the first kids on the block with the new flashy toy, she gets “so bummed” she can’t leave the house. She has a personal shopper. She can impulse buy a new iPhone to cheer herself up.

    So much snobishness packed into one sentence. Amazing

  37. “After three hours of trying to update my old phone, I was too bummed out to go to Burlingame. But I wrote to my personal shopper there, and she says there are plenty available so tomorrow is my day :-)”

    She has three hours to kill updating their phone. When she can’t be one of the first kids on the block with the new flashy toy, she gets “so bummed” she can’t leave the house. She has a personal shopper. She can impulse buy a new iPhone to cheer herself up.

    So much snobishness packed into one sentence. Amazing

  38. The other company that has the same customer cache is Nordstoms. So I wouldn’t say “Apple is the only company….”.

    Art, in case you missed the news, Bill is no longer running Microsoft, so he won’t be copying anything. It will have to be up to Ballmer and Ozzie. And Ozzie is busy with his head in the “cloud”s

    ScottC-now that the iPhone has Exchange ActiveSync it will be more difficult to keep iPhone’s out of companies. The company doesn’t have to buy them for their users . Once C-level execs start buying them for themselves and asking IT to make it work, IT can push back all they want. Unless they want to be outsourced, they are going to have to make their execs happy.

  39. The other company that has the same customer cache is Nordstoms. So I wouldn’t say “Apple is the only company….”.

    Art, in case you missed the news, Bill is no longer running Microsoft, so he won’t be copying anything. It will have to be up to Ballmer and Ozzie. And Ozzie is busy with his head in the “cloud”s

    ScottC-now that the iPhone has Exchange ActiveSync it will be more difficult to keep iPhone’s out of companies. The company doesn’t have to buy them for their users . Once C-level execs start buying them for themselves and asking IT to make it work, IT can push back all they want. Unless they want to be outsourced, they are going to have to make their execs happy.

  40. The App store, SDK, 2.0 and mobile me is the killer apps. I can now have both work (Exchange ActiveSync) and personal ( .mac ) all sync OTA at the same time and it keeps it all separated, so not one overwrites the other. It was so easy, just slide the selectors on the iPhone control panel and your done. Installing apps is ridiculously easy. So easy you gotta watch your wallet. Very cool stuff from Apple. And this is just the opening shot….

  41. The App store, SDK, 2.0 and mobile me is the killer apps. I can now have both work (Exchange ActiveSync) and personal ( .mac ) all sync OTA at the same time and it keeps it all separated, so not one overwrites the other. It was so easy, just slide the selectors on the iPhone control panel and your done. Installing apps is ridiculously easy. So easy you gotta watch your wallet. Very cool stuff from Apple. And this is just the opening shot….

  42. The thing the JesusPhone lacks is a carrier not in bed with the NSA. That’s a feature I can do without. Some of us do care about privacy and civil liberties and AT&T is a non-starter until I see some perp walks in San Antonio, Washington and Fort Meade.

  43. The thing the JesusPhone lacks is a carrier not in bed with the NSA. That’s a feature I can do without. Some of us do care about privacy and civil liberties and AT&T is a non-starter until I see some perp walks in San Antonio, Washington and Fort Meade.

Comments are closed.