This morning, I got up at 3:30am. At about 5am, I turned on the TV and flipped channels to find a couple local news stations doing their bi-annual corporate shill pieces for Apple. Why local news routinely gives Apple free advertising, I’ll never know … but my guess is that corporate media owns tons of AAPL stock and/or they are trying to get favorable mention on iOS devices.
Whatever. Everyone who follows tech is used to this media buttboy routine, and most of us just roll our eyes and move on.
This morning, however, I could not help but watch the puff pieces with mild amusement. While it was still dark outside, the local stations dispatched their reporters to the Downtown Verizon Store at 6th & Olive only to find two people standing in line. TWO.
Woo-hooo, can you feel the excitement?
The store had prepared some kind of barrier thing for crowd control, but with only two people in line, it was just awkward.
The reporters, visibly embarrassed, tried to play it off (“It’s cold outside, but people will be here soon!”), but I just saw the final segment minutes ago … and there were maybe 10 people in the entire Verizon Store … 45 minutes after opening.
While waiting for the store to open, one of the anchors interviewed the Verizon Store manager and asked him what would be different about the Verizon iPhone. The manager launched into some lame “Well, we have the most reliable network in the USA, blah blah blah” spiel, but said absolutely nothing about the iPhone itself. Good god, it was the most painful thing I have seen on local news in some time, and that’s really saying something.
Anyway, the iPhone 4 on Verizon launch is here, and it was met with a collective yawn. At least in Seattle, the only place that matters.
Dear local “news” stations — in the future, please leave the shameless marketing to the shameless marketers, and send your reporters to cover actual, you know … news.
Update: I was not incorrect in my observations. Read this – http://www.tgdaily.com/mobility-brief/54053-short-lines-on-verizon-iphone-launch-day. Only 8 people in line at the flagship store in Manhattan.