Posted September 12th, 2014 @ 01:50pm by Erik J. Barzeski
I first tried reloading the http://store.apple.com/us/buy-iphone/iphone6 URL a few times throughout yesterday evening. After all, Apple said they'd go on sale at midnight, and midnight occurs east of here at about 7pm.
Unsuccessfully, I stayed up until about 12:20pm, thinking that maybe - just maybe - Apple would start selling things when the east coast of the U.S. hit midnight. I figured there was about a 0.1% chance, but it's not like I go to bed very early anyway.
At 2:36am, my alarm went off.
I walked into my office, and reloaded the page. As expected, "We'll be back." I checked in on Twitter to see who else was awake at that time. I texted a friend to make sure he was awake.
And then we waited.
And waited.At 2:50, the AT&T website began taking orders. It wanted me to spend $549 (??) or sign up for Next. I was hoping to purchase the phone outright, unlocked, despite an earlier conversation with an Apple rep on the phone, who told me they would not be selling them that way until some later unknown date. I got all the way to the last step with AT&T but, preferring to give Apple my money instead of AT&T, hesitated. I waited some more.
By 3:10, when the store was still not back online, I checked the iOS Apple Store app. Still nothing.
So we waited some more.
At about 3:20, someone on Twitter mentioned that the iOS Apple Store app was working, so I checked my phone again and it was. I got to the configuration page, saw that I couldn't get a 64 GB Silver phone, and that the Next option was also being forced upon me there.
I completed the checkout, getting a Space Grey 64 GB iPhone 6. I got an order number and everything. I got the "processing" email a few minutes later. It all looked legit.
And yet… the website was still showing "We'll be back." Others were giving up. Some were buying via Verizon's site, or AT&T's.
I hung out online to watch some others until I got really tired at about 4:15. I went back to bed.
I would later learn two things. First, if I had kept clicking around to change the configuration, I would have eventually gotten the "Continue" button on this screen to be active.1 Second, I can just pay off the entire purchase price of the phone in one fell swoop at an AT&T store. Good. I think they might even unlock the phone at that time, but I don't care about that - my wife will get it in a year, and my kiddo one year later.
I hope everyone else was able to get their iPhones.
It's pretty pathetic that the Apple site was such a clusterf***. They've got to be better about this. Between the ordering snafu and the live streaming, it wasn't a great week for Apple's web activities.
- That photo is from the end of the evening. I'd already purchased my iPhone by then. I was documenting my inability to select Silver for my wife and daughter, who prefer the white phones over the black ones I almost always buy.↩