News / Economy

iPhone 4S Release Draws Long Lines, Blackberry Converts Worldwide

People queue outside the Apple store in London to buy the new iPhone 4S, Oct. 14, 2011 (file photo).
People queue outside the Apple store in London to buy the new iPhone 4S, Oct. 14, 2011 (file photo).

Multimedia

Audio

The iPhone 4S hit stores Friday across the globe. Eager Apple consumers have been lining up for days to snatch up the new product, the last Apple gadget to be unveiled before the death of company co-founder Steve Jobs. The release also comes on the heels of major network problems for Blackberry-maker Research In Motion this week. VOA's JulieAnn McKellogg was with the crowds outside a central London Apple store on Friday to find out what the new iPhone means for the smartphone industry.

Listen to VOA's JulieAnn McKellogg's report from London

You can talk to it and it responds.  It has a dual-core processor, making it faster. And it has a better camera and camcorder.

Technology journalist Luke Peters says features like the voice-command, known as Siri, bring innovation to the smartphone industry.

"But you know there are a lot of features here on the phone that Apple is playing catch up with as well," said Peters.

That didn't matter to some. One of the first in line said that he traveled from Denmark and waited an entire day to get the phone.  And the first guy out of the store came for Steve Jobs, the late Apple co-founder. "He basically was such an innovator.  He created a better world for us. He made everything better," said iPhone user Ducan Hoare.

Thousands of people are lined up at this Apple store in central London just waiting to get their hands on the new iPhone 4S. But the craze didn't start here. It actually started when Apple made the phone available for pre-ordering - with a record-breaking one million pre-ordered in the first 24 hours.

The London School of Economics' Silvia Elaluf-Calderwood says the hype is not necessarily over the features, but the brand.

"The emotional aspects of the release of iPhone 4S can't be underestimated," noted Elaluf-Calderwood.  "Many people are buying this phone because they are attached to Mac."

With one company's fortune, comes another's hardship. Blackberry-maker Research In Motion had network outages this week spanning five continents. RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis apologized to customers on Wednesday.

"I apologize for the service outages this week," said Lazaridis.  "We've let many of you down, but let me reassure you that we are working around the clock to fix this. You expect better from us and I expect better from us."

For some Blackberry users the apology came too late.  The iPhone 4S now has a popular feature that once sold consumers on Blackberry, an internal messaging system that incurs no charges for users of the phone.

"Blackberry Messenger is just so confusing," said iPhone convert Daniela Lamattina.  "Like it's been down for about a week now. And I just thought, 'you know what, I am going to get this instead.' It's going to better and hopefully next year I will upgrade to the iPhone 5."

Elaluf-Calderwood says Research In Motion has seen a drop in its sales by three percent for each of the last three quarters. 

"RIM really needs to come up with something new if they really want to continue this game," Elaluf-Calderwood added.

But while its sales are down, Blackberry is still attractive to some users.  Elaluf-Calderwood says it's good for people on a budget. But she says both Blackberry and Apple face major competition from the real smartphone giant, Google Android, which now owns 50 percent of the market share and is growing.

The iPhone 4S hit stores Friday across the globe. Eager Apple consumers have been lining up for days to snatch up the new product, the last Apple gadget to be unveiled before the death of company co-founder Steve Jobs. The release also comes on the heels of major network problems for Blackberry-maker Research In Motion this week. VOA's JulieAnn McKellogg was with the crowds outside a central London Apple store on Friday to find out what the new iPhone means for the smartphone industry.

You can talk to it and it responds.  It has a dual-core processor, making it faster. And it has a better camera and camcorder.

Technology journalist Luke Peters says features like the voice-command, known as Siri, bring innovation to the smartphone industry.

"But you know there are a lot of features here on the phone that Apple is playing catch up with as well," said Peters.

That didn't matter to some. One of the first in line said that he traveled from Denmark and waited an entire day to get the phone.  And the first guy out of the store came for Steve Jobs, the late Apple co-founder.
"He basically was such an innovator.  He created a better world for us. He made everything better," said iPhone user Ducan Hoare.

Thousands of people are lined up at this Apple store in central London just waiting to get their hands on the new iPhone 4S. But the craze didn't start here. It actually started when Apple made the phone available for pre-ordering - with a record-breaking one million pre-ordered in the first 24 hours.
The London School of Economics' Silvia Elaluf-Calderwood says the hype is not necessarily over the features, but the brand.

"The emotional aspects of the release of iPhone 4S can't be underestimated," noted Elaluf-Calderwood.  "Many people are buying this phone because they are attached to Mac."

With one company's fortune, comes another's hardship. Blackberry-maker Research In Motion had network outages this week spanning five continents. RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis apologized to customers on Wednesday.

"I apologize for the service outages this week," said Lazaridis.  "We've let many of you down, but let me reassure you that we are working around the clock to fix this. You expect better from us and I expect better from us."

For some Blackberry users the apology came too late.  The iPhone 4S now has a popular feature that once sold consumers on Blackberry, an internal messaging system that incurs no charges for users of the phone.

"Blackberry Messenger is just so confusing," said iPhone convert Daniela Lamattina.  "Like it's been down for about a week now. And I just thought, 'you know what, I am going to get this instead.' It's going to better and hopefully next year I will upgrade to the iPhone 5."

Elaluf-Calderwood says Research In Motion has seen a drop in its sales by three percent for each of the last three quarters.  

"RIM really needs to come up with something new if they really want to continue this game," Elaluf-Calderwood added.

But while its sales are down, Blackberry is still attractive to some users.  Elaluf-Calderwood says it's good for people on a budget.

But she says both Blackberry and Apple face major competition from the real smartphone giant, Google Android, which now owns 50 percent of the market share and is growing.

You May Like

Video Experts Warn World Losing Ebola Fight

Doctors Without Borders says world is losing battle against Ebola, unless wealthy nations dispatch specialized biological disaster response teams More

Video Experts: Rise of Islamic State Significant Development in Jihadism

Many analysts contend the group - which grew out of al-Qaida in Iraq - has been rebuilding for years More

US-Based Hong Kongers Pledge Support for Pro-Democracy Activists

Democracy advocates call on Chinese living abroad to join them in opposing new election rules for their home territory More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Larger Than Life Chinese Lanterns Make Southern California Appearancei
X
Elizabeth Lee
September 02, 2014 8:57 PM
Chinese lanterns with a long history are lighting up in 21st century style at the Los Angeles County Fair in southern California. Visitors can see traditional lanterns that hang, but also lanterns in the shape of animals, iconic landmarks and many other objects, all created by artisans from a place in China known for its lanterns. Elizabeth Lee has the details from the fair in the city of Pomona.
Video

Video Larger Than Life Chinese Lanterns Make Southern California Appearance

Chinese lanterns with a long history are lighting up in 21st century style at the Los Angeles County Fair in southern California. Visitors can see traditional lanterns that hang, but also lanterns in the shape of animals, iconic landmarks and many other objects, all created by artisans from a place in China known for its lanterns. Elizabeth Lee has the details from the fair in the city of Pomona.
Video

Video Experts See Rise of ISIS as Significant Development

The Islamic State’s rise seems sudden. It caught the U.S. by surprise this summer when it captured large portions of northern Iraq and spread its wings in neighboring Syria. But many analysts contend that the group - which grew out of al-Qaida in Iraq - has been rebuilding for years. VOA's Jela de Franceschi takes a closer look at the rise of ISIS and its implications for the Middle East and beyond.
Video

Video Israel Concerned Over Syrian Rebels in Golan

Israeli officials are following with concern the recent fighting between Syrian rebels and government forces near the contested Golan Heights. Forty-four U.N. peacekeepers from Fiji have been seized by Syrian Islamist rebels and the clashes occasionally have spilled into Israel. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forces

A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video US Detainees Want Negotiators for Freedom in North Korea

The three U.S. detainees held in North Korea were permitted to speak with foreign media Monday. The government of Kim Jong Un restricted the topics of the questions, and the interviews in Pyongyang were limited to five minutes. Each of the men asked Washington to send a representative to Pyongyang to secure his release. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti has our story.
Video

Video Turkmen From Amerli Describe Survival of IS Siege

Over the past few weeks, hundreds of Shi'ite Turkmen have fled the town of Amerli seeking refuge in the northern city of Kirkuk. Despite recent military gains after U.S. airstrikes that were coordinated with Iraqi and Kurdish forces, the situation remains dire for Amerli’s residents. Sebastian Meyer went to Kirkuk for VOA to speak to those who managed to escape.
Video

Video West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015

A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video Survivors Commemorate 70th Anniversary of Nazi Liquidation of Jewish Ghetto

When the German Nazi army occupied the Polish city of Lodz in 1939, it marked the beginning of a long nightmare for the Jewish community that once made up one third of the population. Roughly 200,000 people were forced into the Lodz Ghetto. Less than 7,000 survived. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, some survivors gathered at the Union League Club in Chicago on the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Lodz Ghetto to remember those who suffered at the hands of the Nazi regime.

AppleAndroid

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.7537
JPY
USD
103.79
GBP
USD
0.6032
CAD
USD
1.0957
INR
USD
60.522

Rates may not be current.