iPad 2 lines persist as frustration grows | iLounge News

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iPad 2 lines persist as frustration grows

Based on multiple reader and third-party reports, Apple retail stores across the country are continuing to see daily lineups in the morning of customers looking to purchase an iPad 2, despite no promises of availability and reports of limited stock when shipments do arrive. Mark Hosbein, a potential iPad 2 customer, wrote on Cult of Mac that “There are several people who have waited in line multiple days and still do not get product. I was with 70 angry customers this morning. Only ten people got iPads – there were twenty available and the first ten people – many of whom looked like resellers for eBay or were shipping them overseas – all bought two.” Indeed, the problems with customers purchasing extra units to resell seems to be a widespread problem, as iLounge reader Ben points out: “I don’t know if its like this in other cities, but NYC is plagued by scalpers. At this point Apple really needs to reduce the purchase limit to 1, at least in the cities that are being run by these guys. Its ridiculous.”

iPad 2 launch day line at the Walden Galleria Apple Store in Buffalo, NY.

Aside from the issue of potential scalpers, Apple has thus far opted not to offer an online availability checker. The company offered this service for both the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS, letting customers check stock levels at any of the company’s U.S.-based retail stores without the need for phone calls or physical visits; Mac Rumors notes that some readers are instead using Target’s inventory tracking service to find units. A report last week indicated that some Apple retail stores were holding new shipments of iPad 2 units for sale until the following morning, in some cases opening early in order to serve as many iPad 2 customers as possible before the start of normal business hours. While it may seem counter-intuitive, readers looking to purchase an iPad 2 may at this point be better off placing an order online—despite the quoted 4-5 week wait time—to guard against the wasted time and frustration that could come with lining up at an Apple retail store on a daily basis only to come away empty-handed.

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Comments

1

Although I think it’s a great product, and I have yet to receive mine, i wouldnt wait on line for hours, or even multiple days.  I just placed my order online and let the product come to me.

Posted by angel love on March 21, 2011 at 12:21 PM (CDT)

2

Curious as to why Apple doesn’t have an on-line inventory checking capability for iPad 2 stock at its retail stores. Best Buy offers this, which is how I was able to very easily purchase the exact iPad2 model I wanted.

Glad to see other retailers are doing this, and hopefully Apple will follow suit. iOS devices are amazing, but certainly not worth “camping out” to obtain one.

Posted by Farnsworth on March 21, 2011 at 12:44 PM (CDT)

3

“[T]he first ten people – many of whom looked like resellers for eBay or were shipping them overseas – all bought two.”

How the hell does this person know their motives by their appearances? Prejudice much?

Posted by beetsnotbeats on March 21, 2011 at 12:56 PM (CDT)

4

Mark Hosbein, a potential iPad 2 customer, wrote on Cult of Mac that “There are several people who have waited in line multiple days and still do not get product. I was with 70 angry customers this morning. Only ten people got iPads – there were twenty available and the first ten people – many of whom looked like resellers for eBay or were shipping them overseas – all bought two.”

Spoken like the 11th person in line.

Posted by Charles Farley on March 21, 2011 at 1:10 PM (CDT)

5

I (and many others in the Buffalo NY Store) have had the worst Apple experience ever.

I was roughly number 200 out of 350 people (Apple counted) and to keep the crowd excited, Apple issued iPad vouchers around four o’ clock, re-assuring the people to stay in line, because once you own a voucher, you’ll get a device. So far, so good.

The problem: This voucher did NOT specify the model, but one out of 18 flavors, meaning that there was a risk that you’ll only get what’ s left once it was your turn. And sure enough the models ran out pretty soon, starting with all ATT versions, thus leaving people on a budget only expensive versions, the huge canadian crowd with only unusable Verizon CDMA models, existing ATT plan customers without usable devices and me without anything close what I wanted and came for.

Many dozens went out empty handed only after having spent up to 10 hours in line for giving Apple money.

If Apple had gone through the line, had issued accurately accounted and model-specific vouchers representing the real inventory, many people could have saved a day of waiting for nothing. It would have been a kinda real time in-line reservation system, much like the online reservation system used during the iPhone 4 launch.

To be clear: I don’ t blame Apple for the short supply of a hot product. It’ s the peoples problem, not Apple’s, to come too late to party. The early bird catches the worm.

But handing out ONE voucher that spans a product range of $499 - $829, 3 different network connections, 3 RAM configurations and two colors close to the border of two different 3G network hemispheres is downright stupid.

And: Listening to Apple employers trying to talk frustrated canadian customers into the CDMA versions ‘because they live close to the U.S. border’ was embarrassing and sounded much like Sarah Palins foreign policy argument towards Russia.

And while we are at it: Apple, I don’t appreciate being lied into my face by hearing ‘we don’ t know our inventory’.

How did you know how many vouchers to issue if you did not know your inventory number in the first place ??

Of course they know it down to the last serial number, but they did not want to tell customers because they hope to keep the lines long and sell the less popular models to the frustrated ones only desperate to not leave empty-handed.

Bottom line Apple pissed of many, many customers yesterday, incl. me. They have suffered a serious dent in the perception of even the most diehard fanboys.

Posted by Tom Schmitt on March 21, 2011 at 1:52 PM (CDT)

6

@5 -

That really does suck. I was in line in Reston, Virginia for roughly 3 hours. At 5:30 or 6:00, the Apple employees started going down the line asking people exactly which model they were waiting for. They handed out a voucher for that exact model and were using an iPod Touch that was frequently updated with the remaining stock. It worked out very well and let those near the end of the line know exactly what was available and when they ran out entirely.

My only wish would have been that they started this process 1 1/2 hours earlier. That could have shortened the line and kept folks from hanging out a few extra hours for nothing.

Posted by Mitch on March 21, 2011 at 2:02 PM (CDT)

7

What a bunch of whining. As long as people want to buy iPads at inflated prices, I have no problem with people buying as many as they can carry. This is what a free market looks like. Something we always hear Americans are very fond of. The “poor” people standing in line at 2am may be doing so because making a buck on eBay or Craigs list will enable them not to default on their mortgage.

Posted by Carlitos Way on March 21, 2011 at 2:21 PM (CDT)

8

Somebody who has enough free time to be able to spend several DAYS queueing for an iPad patently doesn’t have the kind of job that pays enough to be able to afford one. Just order one online, you’ll get it eventually. Jeez.

Posted by Jonathan White on March 21, 2011 at 2:56 PM (CDT)

9

wah, wah, wah…
If you weren’t in line on March 11, I really don’t feel sorry for you. I stood in line and got the one I wanted-of course I got to best buy at 130 pm.

Just man up and order it on-line and move on with your life.

Posted by g e on March 21, 2011 at 4:15 PM (CDT)

10

Wow who has time and money to wait in line day after day just to get the iPad you want.  That’s pretty dumb if you ask me.  Just order one online and exercise some patience.

Posted by Marc on March 21, 2011 at 4:38 PM (CDT)

11

The interesting thing is that Apple could have held off on the release date to have a considerably greater supply… but then they wouldn’t have fools like these creating many millions of dollars in free advertising for them. It’s amazing how well trained Apple’s consumers are in cases like this.

Place an order online or, hey, just wait a month or two and there will be all the iPad 2s you can afford, but all you’re doing by lining up is generating free advertising and press for the very company that hyped up a release they knew demand couldn’t be immediately met for in return for a slim chance of actually getting your hands on an iPad 2.

Posted by Code Monkey in Midstate New York on March 21, 2011 at 5:15 PM (CDT)

12

Do you have a Facebook fan page or account that I can like or add so I can be updated with your posts? Thanks!

Posted by Pearl Hsia on March 21, 2011 at 8:12 PM (CDT)

13

Do you have a Facebook fan page or account that I can like or add so I can be updated with your posts? Thanks!

Posted by Pearl Hsia on March 21, 2011 at 8:15 PM (CDT)

14

I stopped by Fashion Island today to check out the white ipad 2.  They had a sign up in front of the store that said that they had no ipads in stock today.

I’ve been to 4 Apple Stores in the past couple of weeks, mostly just to look but each time I have to ask somebody if they have them.  Then you get in the whole “just order online” conversation.  Putting the sign up was a good idea.  That way I knew before I even entered the store that it was pointless to ask.

Also, every store I’ve been to has been flush with covers.  They won’t be hard to get ahold of when I eventually get a new ipad.

Posted by Dick Bacon on March 22, 2011 at 2:22 AM (CDT)

15

i was able to get mine mid last week from target using their web tracker, much easier than going to the apple store everyday.  However, even when they the tracker say it’s available, there’s probably about 3 in stock and you’ll have to get there early.

Posted by Allan on March 22, 2011 at 5:07 AM (CDT)

16

@5,

You should have went to the Best Buy in the McKinley Mall. I got there at 4PM and was 7th in line. Even by 5PM, I doubt there were more than 50 in line. And the store had over 100 iPads. The store handed out numbered vouchers for each specific unit and only allowed one purchase per person and only allowed seconds if everyone in line was served. They were very organized and the experience was just about perfect.

Posted by Dale on March 22, 2011 at 8:53 AM (CDT)

17

#7 - I agree with you….although I must say, if someone is about to default on their mortgage, I think buying an iPad PERIOD should be LOW on their list of priorities, no? There’s better ways to make a few bucks, like, um, getting a job.

Posted by Eric on March 22, 2011 at 10:11 AM (CDT)

18

Called a (e-Vil) Walmart 30 minutes south of me…they had one.  40 minutes later, I was on my way home with it.

Posted by Gary on March 22, 2011 at 8:32 PM (CDT)

19

I spoke to an Apple Store manager last weekend a couple of days after I got my iPad. He explained to me that the preorder system in place last year was a disaster because too many people reserved multiple iPads in multiple locations. If you remember back then, the hold on an iPad would stay until 5 PM that day, then it would go into the pile for anyone to buy. The system wreaked havoc on each store’s inventory. I’m not sure I believe this, but I do get the feeling that Apple has given a lot of consideration to what happens during initial launch. They’re concerned about the scalpers, yet they can’t do anything about them like mandating credit cards. They, and we as customers, are stuck. I suggested that they have specific days for certain SKUs (3 days WiFi, 2 days AT&T/Verizon each). Even that may not matter as people are taking what they can get at this point.

Posted by marinelayer on March 23, 2011 at 7:04 PM (CDT)

20

The Rockaway NJ Apple store is extremely Incompetent in my opinion.

My biggest complaint is that they tell customers in line they have no idea how many IPads or what configuration they may be.

They actually try to make you think that the IPads were just received when we in reality they were received the previous day or earlier.

Suggestions to post a sign in the store window to show what is available was met with a “we will check with Apple headquarters and let you know”. No response was ever received.

The same group of people are in line Early every day and appear to be buying to send overseas. It would be interesting to have Immigration show up and check who these people are working for.

Posted by Disgusted Apple Customer on March 28, 2011 at 10:29 AM (CDT)

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