Some have noted that the lines for the iPhone 4S on Friday were disappointingly short. Apple might have sold a record 4 million devices in four days, but the launch day lines were nothing compared to those for the iPhone 4 or the iPad 2.
But there was one place where the lines went around the block — and no one seems to have reported it yet.
In most places, the lines for the iPhone 4S were nothing compared to previous Apple product launches. In San Francisco, for example, the 300 people or so that lined up all had their iPhones about 30 minutes after the store opened.
The relatively short lines were due to several factors, including the fact that the iPhone 4S was on sale at a wide variety of outlets and not just the Apple Store — AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, Target, Best Buy, Radio Shack, Walmart, etc.
But more importantly, the 4S was available for preorder, which the iPad 2 was not. That means a lot of customers preordered their phone for delivery by UPS.
But many of those people weren’t home on Friday to receive their order. The crazy lines for the 4S weren’t at Apple, but at UPS late into Friday night.
A friend in the East Bay said he ditched the line at his local UPS and 8:40pm when there were still more than 100 people in front of him.
Look at the photo above. The pickup point is off the frame to the right, near the blue light.
“I estimated about 100 people in line ahead of us, plus 20 or so behind us when we finally ditched the line,” he said.
UPS hasn’t released any numbers about the number of iPhone 4Ss it delivered on Friday, or how late its package centers stayed open on Friday night. We’ve reached out to UPS for some numbers and comment, and will update this post.