HUNDREDS of Apple devotees queued in gloomy conditions for hours yesterday to be the first Scots to get their hands on the latest iPhone models.
Customers descended on Buchanan Street in Glasgow and queued around the block to buy the iPhone 6 and larger iPhone 6 Plus, while there were also big crowds at the Apple store in Aberdeen yesterday.
The rush came after the firm unveiled the devices to much fanfare at a highly anticipated event in California last week.
Each device is available in 16GB, 64GB and 128GB configurations, with the 4.7in iPhone 6 starting from £539, £619 for the 64 GB version and £699 for the 128GB model, without contracts.The 5.5in iPhone 6 Plus will retail from £619 for 16GB, £699 for the 64GB model and £789 for the new 128GB model.
James Nielson, 45, from Blackburn, West Lothian, was among those who travelled to Glasgow and camped out from the early hours.
“I actually took a hotel room for the night so I could get in the queue first thing this morning,” he told The Scotsman.
He said despite his efforts the store had run out of the larger model, but he was satisfied to be among the first to get an iPhone 6. He added: “It’s quite fun coming down here first thing. There was a lot of people with us, so it was nice to have somebody to chat to.”
Morgan Wan, 23, a Chinese student studying finance at Glasgow University, also camped out from the early hours and said: “I really love Apple’s products, I’ve the Mac Air, iPod, and I had iPhone 4S before.
“It’s not just the way they look, it’s the software and operating system that’s great.”
She added that the £600 plus price was in fact a bargain, saying: “All my friends back in China have been asking me to buy one for them, because the only place you can get iPhones is in Hong Kong – and they cost £1,000.”
One of the first people in the UK to get his hands on the new iPhone yesterday morning felt “on top of the world”.
Jameel Ahmed, 26, and friend Sam Sheikh, 27, originally from India and now living in London, were the first two technology fans through the doors of the Apple store in Covent Garden to pick up the new handsets.
Leaving with his purchase, Mr Ahmed said he was “really excited”, adding: “I’d like to open it and take my selfie.”
Hundreds of people queued outside the store and took part in a ten-second countdown before doors opened at 8am and they were escorted in by staff.
Some fans were so keen to get their hands on the new iPhones they began camping outside the Apple store in Regent Street, London, on Monday.
Around 30 people set up camp outside the store on Thursday night, with tents, tables and chairs and even bottles of wine.
Mr Ahmed said: “It’s a challenge with my friends that I’ll have the iPhone first.”
Mr Sheikh said he was glad his pursuit of a new iPhone was more successful than his last attempt, when he queued for almost seven nights and felt like a “loser”.
On Monday, Apple announced a record number of first day pre-orders of the two handsets – more than four million in the first 24 hours.