T-Mobile iPhone Sales Jam Company Stores in Washington, D.C., Elsewhere
NEWS ANALYSIS: T-Mobile stores in the Washington, D.C. area reported huge crowds, long lines and heavy demand for the T-Mobile version of the iPhone 5 and older models.The woman at the Manassas, Va., T-Mobile store sounded frazzled. “We’re slammed,” she said, and suggested that if I wanted to buy an iPhone 5 from T-Mobile in the DC area, it might make sense to make an appointment. A salesperson at another T-Mobile store in the Washington suburbs said that the store had to borrow line management ropes and stands from a nearby Best Buy in order to handle the crowds. Another store reported very strong sales; a salesperson there said that he was dreading when everyone gets off from work. “I don’t know what’s going to happen then. I hope we’re ready.” The sales staffs at the Washington-area T-Mobile stores said that the fact that they were in an area served by T-Mobile’s newly launched LTE seemed to spur a lot of sales. “Everybody wants to know how fast the LTE is,” one salesperson said. “All I know is that it’s really fast.” At each store that I contacted in the DC suburbs there seemed to be amazement at the response to the opening day of iPhone sales for T-Mobile. While at least some of the people working at these stores had at least witnessed the long lines of customers at Apple and AT&T stores in previous months, they’d never actually experienced anything like this.
So why the rush to buy an iPhone 5 from T-Mobile? After all, this phone has been out for six months. You’d think that everyone who wanted one would have it by now. Part of the reason is that T-Mobile is offering features that other carriers aren’t and part of the excitement is that T-Mobile is offering a much better deal than anyone else including Apple.