Verizon Droid Sales Conjure Images of iPhone Release

Droid sales attract cell phone geeks

Bye bye BlackBerry?

Bye bye BlackBerry?

Stores opened at midnight. People lined up in the streets, awaiting Verizon Droid sales. When did people become cell phone geeks? I think it started with the iPhone, which was the first mobile communication device in recorded history to cause people to behave this way.

Now, midnight Droid sales and crowded Verizon stores look like Wal-Mart on the night of a video game console release. At least, that’s what it looked like last night at Verizon stores in Manhattan, where 65 people lined up outside one store and more than 100 at another.

Mobs and marketing

The release of a new “Star Wars” movie, tickets for concerts that are bound to sell out, the latest Xbox model: these are things that cause people to line up in the middle of the night in November. It wasn’t until the iPhone, it seems, that people were willing to go to such lengths as getting a quick payday loan and waiting out in the cold for a cell phone.

Yes, I know the iPhone and the Droid and all smartphones are more than cell phones. Still, it’s amazing to me that the marketing people for these devices can create so much hype that people are intent on being “one of the first” to own it and being able to say they got it the day they came out.

Droid does

Preliminary reports indicate Droid is meeting its goal of being the iPhone’s biggest competitor. CNET reports:

Many people have been comparing the new Droid to the iPhone, and some have even called the new device the true iPhone killer.

Several people interviewed Thursday night outside Verizon stores said they had wanted an iPhone but didn’t want to switch to AT&T, and now they’re glad they waited. Loyal Verizon users are the most excited about the Droid, which means Droid sales are having a somewhat unforeseen effect on another Verizon product.

Droid the Blackberry killer?

A common category of Droid buyer appears to the the ex-BlackBerry user. Based on interviews with people outside the Droid sales, CNET reported:

Gabrielle Dahms and her boyfriend, Will Welch, had been BlackBerry Curve users. Welch said he had tried the BlackBerry Storm last year when it first came out, but he didn’t like it. He also thought the iPhone was cool, but was unwilling to switch carriers for it. And he said he would have probably upgraded to the BlackBerry Tour if the Droid hadn’t come along

.

People have a tendency to remain loyal to their wireless carriers, and some iPhone users are simply loyal to Apple products. So in many cases, Verizon Droid sales will likely draw people who already use Verizon and are looking for an upgrade.

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