A new Apple store in Beijing atracted a mass of people at around 10 a.m. when the store was scheduled to open. The line didn’t to get into the store didn’t seem too long, until I realized that people were lining up in an adjoining building to stay out of the sun. Later they started handing out (Apple?) umbrellas for people waiting outside.
I had a chance to speak to the project manager of the store who had been working on the new store for the past six months. He estimated that there were about 1000 people lining up to get into the store. The store is only the second one in Asia. The first one was in Ginza, Tokyo. The project manager said they had some problems getting the store set up in China, including getting the glass for the entrance. The store is spread over two stories and is approximately 2,000 square meters.
The store however is yet to start selling the new or even the old iPhones. iPhones are not officially sold in China, despite approximately 600,000 of the units being sold - not to mention the iPhone cheap knockoff the “HiPhone”.
Never a fan of waiting in line for anything, I think I will wait until Monday morning to take a closer look inside the store.