With the much-hyped iPhone just days away from release, individuals hoping to make a quick buck on the device have turned to online bulletin boards such as Craigslist to offer their 'services'.
A self-described 'expert line-stander' from New York offered to queue up from Thursday afternoon until 4pm Friday for a fee of US$1,000, iPhone not included. In most cases, the price of 'queuing services' ranged from US$175 to US$250.
Apple chief executive Steve Jobs said at the Worldwide Developers Conference earlier this month that the iPhone would go on sale in the US at 6pm local time on 29 June, but the company has yet to reveal the exact details of the launch.
While the price of the device has been disclosed ($499 for the 4GB version, and US$599 for the 8GB), AT&T, the exclusive operator of the iPhone, has yet to reveal the terms and conditions of the two-year plan to which buyers must sign up.
It is not clear whether the 'queuing services' have encountered much demand. Ads from 'line-waiters' were vastly outnumbered by ads from those looking for a guaranteed shot at an iPhone.
One prospective buyer from New York, who was offering US$75 for someone to wait in line, said: "Nobody is going to pay someone US$250 for an already expensive phone! Get real folks!"
desperate iPhone seeker from San José, California could not pay extra for someone to queue up, but did offer "something of mine like my stereo system from my car or something".
Other offers were slightly more practical. One user from Chicago was offering 10 tickets to two White Stripes concerts, while a user from New York was selling Beastie Boys tickets in an effort to raise money for the device.
Pre-release hype for the iPhone was at its strongest on the New York and Silicon Valley versions of Craigslist, where dozens of queuing offers could be found.
In Seattle, home to Apple arch-rival Microsoft, the Craigslist market for the iPhone was decidedly more tepid. Just two Seattle posters were offering their queuing services, and nobody had made a post offering to purchase the device.
There are currently no listings for any iPhones on eBay. The auction website requires sellers to own the goods that they offer for sale, and removes all auctions for items that do not meet its guidelines as a matter of policy.
Professional queuers offer to lineup for iPhone
By Shaun Nichols on Jun 27, 2007 3:34AM