Apple’s iPhone 4S is one of the hottest smartphones available right now, spawning lengthy launch-day queues outside of Apple stores all over the world. In Hong Kong, where the device goes on sale in just a few hours’ time, police have been called to settle violent fights that broke out with a group of South Asian “professional queuers” who attempted to push their way to the front of the line.
They are labeled professional queuers because they are paid to stand in line and collect the new sought-after iPhone for a third-party — usually a grey market reseller. Rather than joining the back of the queue when they arrived, the group pushed their way to the front, threatening customers who weren’t happy about moving that other gang members would arrive to force them out of line.
Police were called the break up the violence that ensued and managed to calm things down. When they left, however, “all hell broke loose,” according to a GizChina report, and the police had to return a second time. This time they forced all customers to leave.
The line is now reforming, this time with much stricter enforcement and security officials on-hand.
According to M.I.C. Gadget, Apple’s new store in Hong Kong attracted “a lot more” people for the launch of the iPhone 4S than its flagship store in Fifth Avenue did for the device’s launch in the U.S. Owing to “poor air ventilation, one lady suffered an epileptic seizure while waiting in line.